(Victor Valley)–The Board of Supervisors today voted unanimously to reduce their benefits by nearly 40 percent, making board member compensation comparable to Riverside, Orange, and San Diego counties and saving taxpayers more than $240,000 a year.
“At a time when we are asking all of our staff and all of our departments and all of our programs to do more with less, at a time when our residents and taxpayers are running their households and their businesses and their lives with less, it is incumbent on us as elected leaders of this county to show that we can do more with less, too,” said Second District Supervisor Janice Rutherford, who proposed the cuts.
Supervisors eliminated several types of benefits currently provided to members of the board, including their retirement pickups, contributions toward 401(k) and 457(b) savings plans, and medical expense reimbursements.
A voter-approved County Charter amendment sets board member salaries at a fixed amount comparable to supervisors in neighboring counties. However, their benefits add nearly $121,000 to each board member’s total annual compensation. The board’s action today cuts that number by more than $48,000.
The 2010-11 Grand Jury reviewed board salaries and benefits last year and concluded San Bernardino County compensation was not comparable to what was provided in other counties. The board responded by directing the creation of the benefit reduction ordinance approved today.