Salary for civil engineers disputed

By Kevin Liles

At least one Clayton County commissioner thinks the pay for two civil engineers isn't fair.

Charlie Griswell, who represents District 4, said the two, who are employed in the county Transportation Department, should receive raises like many other county employees this year. His comments were made during a work session Tuesday morning where commissioners discussed the proposed budget for fiscal year 2005, which begins July 1.

"We've got a bad situation ? if you don't already know it," he said. "You are going to give a 5 percent raise to public safety and aren't going to give any to these positions. Tell me how y'all justify that."

The work session followed the commission's regular meeting, where no one spoke during a public hearing for the budget.

The two engineers are expected to quit within a few weeks, Griswell said.

Renee Bright, Clayton County's director of personnel, said her department could not justify a raise for the engineers. Each year, her department re-evaluates positions that qualify.

"We do a survey of metro counties and other areas that are similar to us," Bright said. "And we were not able to recommend a raise for those positions."

A position is re-evaluated only if the department director feels the salary is not competitive or the job description has changed, Bright said.

Griswell said the job description for the civil engineers has changed n they are now responsible for overseeing testing of storm water drains, for example.

Bright and her staff agreed to look again at the pay scale for the civil engineers and report back to commissioners at their meeting next week.

Commissioners will vote on the budget at their meeting at 9 a.m. Tuesday at 112 Smith Street.