Kendall urged to increase pay for pair of department heads
By Steve Lord email@example.com September 7, 2012 2:40PM
Anna Payton, head of Kendall County Animal Control, plays with an American Pitbull Terrier at the Animal Control facility in Yorkville. | Sun-Times Media File
Updated: October 11, 2012 6:06AM
YORKVILLE – The Kendall County Board will consider raises — of $5,000 or more — for at least two department heads as part of this year’s budget discussions.
Finance Committee Chairman Anne Vickery is proposing the raises for two department heads she believes have done exceptional work — Supervisor of Assessments Andy Nicolletti and Animal Control Warden Anna Payton.
Both are department heads, hired and supervised by the board, not elected officials. The board sets salaries for the elected officials, but does not supervise their performance.
Vickery said she would like to consider giving Nicolletti, who has been with the county about three years, a $6,500 raise from his current yearly salary of about $72,000. She said Nicolletti streamlined the assessment office, which oversees township assessors and the Board of Review, and saved the county money.
She said assessment appeals began favoring the county because of the work he has done.
Payton has been with county about a year. She was appointed the new head of Animal Control when the former head was fired about a year ago in the wake of problems at Animal Control that culminated in the wrong dog being euthanized, and a dog with a biting problem inadvertently being adopted out.
Payton makes $40,000, and Vickery said she would like to give her a $5,000 increase. Vickery said Payton has reorganized Animal Control, turned it around and substantially increase its revenue.
“We’ve increased our (fund balance) there by 837 percent,” Vickery said. “Most know the long history of bad management we’ve had there. I think it’s a fair raise.”
Vickery said she knows the raises will be a hard sell in the current budget climate. In fact, board member Nancy Martin already has said that while she agrees both Nicolletti and Payton have done good jobs, she is against a substantial raise for anyone this year.
Board members are expected to take up the raises at the Committee of the Whole meeting Thursday.
Vickery said the county has made headway in its battle with the budget. She said at this time last year, the county faced more than $1 million deficit in its budget, but starts this year facing only about a $500,000 budget.
“We expect by the end of this year we won’t be running a deficit at all,” she said.
Budget discussions are taking place in the midst of an organized tax protest in Kendall this year. A taxpayers group got thousands of signatures on petitions for an advisory referendum on the November ballot seeking to have all local governments cut their tax levies by 20 percent.