Masterton Board Chair again, elected officials receive raises

Mark Masterton will serve as the Scotts Bluff County Board's Chairman once again. The commissioners unanimously elected Masterton as the chairman at the beginning of Monday's meeting. It is believed to be the 14th straight year Masterton will serve as Chairman.

The Commissioners also decided on elected officials salaries for 2015-2018, deciding on a proposal by Commissioner Sherry Blaha that raises the officials' pay four percent in 2015 and 2% the remaining three years.

Blaha said the proposal allows the the County Clerk, Register of Deeds, Treasurer, Assessor and Clerk of the District Court to continue to have equal salaries while bringing the local elected officials salaries more in line with those of their counterparts in similar counties. Blaha, who worked on the proposal all weekend, said it was about "fairness and equality."

The commissioners also approved applying for a State Crime Commission grant to help cover the cost for the new home for District 12 Probation's Reporting Center, the McConaughy Discovery Center building across from the courthouse. District 12 Probation Chief Linda Buehler says if the county receives the grant, $70,000 of the money will be used to help the county cover the $220,000 cost to purchase the building. Another $19,000 would be used for furniture and the rest would be used for evaluations and incentives for juveniles who complete programs.

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