Lampert Explains His Empassioned Plea Of “Just Make It Fair!” (AUDIO)

Dubois County Sheriff Donny Lampert

Dubois County Sheriff
Donny Lampert

JASPER (NNDC) – Dubois County Sheriff Donny Lampert let it be known Monday night, he thought the county council’s decision to give a county employee a sizable raise to take over the county’s community corrections center, “unfair!”

Monday, the council approved a $5,000 raise so William Wells, the program director for Dubois County Court Substance Abuse Services, would take over as director at the Dubois County Community Corrections Center.  The council turned down the pay hike last month after Wells told them he’d have turn down the job because he would have to take a pay cut.

Dubois Superior Court Judge Mark McConnell, who serves as the county’s Community Corrections Advisory Board’s chairperson, along with retired Circuit Court Judge William Weikert and Weikert’s successor, Nathan Verkamp, convinced the council Monday night to use funds from a now vacant administrative position to pay for the increased salary for Wells.

Lampert says the council’s vote was wrong given the fact the council’s admitted “belt-tightening” over the last couple of years.

Lampert, who is also on the advisory board, says if there money that can be given for raises, he thinks that money should also go to people who he thinks are greatly underpaid like the county’s health department director and his chief deputy, both positions make less than $50,000…

Lampert left the council meeting shortly after the three judges spoke before the council for fear he was going to say something he’d regret in the heat of the moment, but he did return to voice his dissatisfaction with the vote.

Nick Hostetter, Jerry Hunefeld, Charmain Klem and council president Greg Kendall voted for the increase Monday.  Klem changed her mind from July saying since then she’s learned that the salaries of similar community corrections positions across the state pay more than $50,000.

Lampert says what may be paid elsewhere in Indiana, shouldn’t be justification for the pay here…

Lampert also voiced his concern that interim director Jenny Fuhs, who he credits for successfully turning around the embattled community corrections center, was not given the proper consideration to become its full time director.

Lampert left Monday’s meeting saying he has nothing against William Wells, but he says the pay increase was a slap in the face of other county employees and their families who he says are getting “screwed over.”  He told the council repeatedly, “Make it fair, just make it fair!”

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