The Franklin County Commissioners passed a resolution this week authorizing updates to their employee pay structure, including raising the minimum pay of their employees to $17 per hour ($35,360 per year). In order to address the “wage compression” that happens when just the lowest pay is increased, the changes will also include raising the minimum starting pay in each of the commissioners’ job classifications, and tenure raises for long-term employees. The changes come following a salary and wage study performed by the national consulting firm, Clemans Nelson & Associates, and during what continues to be a tight labor market.
“As an employer, the Franklin County Board of Commissioners takes pride in supporting all our employees. We know our county could not succeed without our staff’s valuable contributions,” said Board of Commissioners President Erica C. Crawley. “Further, we know our employees’ wellbeing impacts our residents every day as Franklin County provides vital social services.”
Each Board of Commissioners job is slotted into one of 30 tiered pay grades. Under the updated pay scheme, employees who are currently paid less than $17 per hour will see their rate raised to that new amount. In addition, the minimum hourly rate for each pay grade will be increased by $2 per hour or 8%, whichever is higher. Also, employees will receive raises based on the length of time they’ve been employed by the county:
- employees with one to three years of service will receive $0.25 per hour
- employees with three to five years of service will receive $0.50
- employees with five to ten years of service will receive $1
- and employees with more than ten years of service to the county will receive a $1.50 per hour raise.
“We have the best employees anywhere,” said Commissioner John O’Grady. “And we’re proud to be a leader in the community by continuing to pay them an honest wage for an honest day’s work on behalf of our residents.”
The commissioners have long worked to ensure that their employees are paid a fair, living wage, first establishing an updated minimum of $13.69 in 2016, and raising it to $15 per hour several years later. The county also offers what the commissioners believe to be the best package of benefits for any public employer in Central Ohio.
“We’re always in competition for employees with the City of Columbus, our suburbs, the state of Ohio, Ohio State, and any number of other large employers,” said Commissioner Kevin L. Boyce. “It’s important that we remain competitive so that we can recruit and retain the best possible teammates in order to provide the best possible service to our residents.”
The changes approved this week apply to non-union Board of Commissioners employees and will go into effect in September, but the commissioners have said that they will work with other county agencies through the budgeting process to allow them to offer similar adjustments in their own pay scales. Any change in pay for union members (even for a higher salary) must first receive approval from the bargaining units, which the commissioners expect this week. The commissioners’ own salaries are set in Ohio law and are not affected by today’s resolution.