Two unpaid Yavapai County constable positions will now come with a salary, albeit a small one, beginning Jan. 1, 2019.
County Administrator Phil Bourdon asked the county supervisors at the June 6 board meeting for a $6,000 per year ($500 per month) salary for constables serving in Seligman and Bagdad/Yarnell.
Currently, the constables, Luis Alvarez of Seligman and Dennis Dowling of Bagdad/Yarnell, provide their services free to the county.
Bourdon said the board could set the salary for the next four years. In addition, he asked for an 8 percent increase for the other three constable positions.
Supervisor Craig Brown said the three constables already collecting a salary do not receive annual cost of living adjustments to their wages. The 8 percent, stretched over the past four years, would equal what a COLA would have been.
“We’re actually in arrears,” Supervisor Tom Thurman said. “It’s eight years, because there will be no increase for the next four years.”
Bourdon pointed out that the last pay increase was in 2006, 12 years ago; and the 8 percent increase will actually cover a span of 16 years.
Not all constables have served since 2006, however. Supervisor Brown said 80 percent of current constables were not seated in 2013.
Regarding the unpaid constables, Thurman said, “They are receiving nothing in salary, and that’s not right.”
State statute sets constable salaries in smaller precincts based on how many documents are served per year. Bagdad/Yarnell and Seligman constables could earn up to $16,500.
For other precincts, the salary is decided by the number of registered voters in that precinct. Prescott Constable Ron Williams and Verde Valley Constable Jody Fanning each receive $55,654, which is within the statute limits of $48,294-$76,000.
Mayer Constable Hank Hellman receives $36,100, which is at the low end of the statute limits of $36,110-$50,000.
The board unanimously approved the salary changes for the term Jan. 1, 2019 to Dec. 31, 2022.
In other action, the board approved:
A minor amendment of the final plat for Sterling Ranch at Talking Rock Ranch subdivision reducing total lots from 51 to 45 on four tracts on 365 acres.
A surplus online auction of office furniture and supplies, kitchen equipment, exam tables for July 18-Aug. 1.
A right-of-way lease with Arizona Land Department for $58,979 for the first 10 of 50 years for regional storm water detention basin in Ho Kay Gan area of Williamson Valley.