Raises proposed for county officials

  • Resolution 2019-1, page 2

  • Resolution 2019-1, page 1

LIHUE — The county’s top officials might be getting a raise.

Kauai County Councilmembers today will consider a proposal to increase their own salaries along those of 30 county executives, including the mayor, the managing director, the police and fire chiefs.

The pay raises would affect all elected and appointed officers — a list composed of primarily of department heads and deputy directors for the county’s major agencies — as well as certain positions selected by the county salary commission.

The combined average annual salary for all county officials on the list, excepting the councilmembers, is slightly over $115,000.

The vast majority of the proposed raises — which, if approved, would take effect July 1 — are 7.6 percent, although a handful of officials are in line for larger jumps in pay.

Resolution 2019-1 calls for a 14.8-percent increase in the salaries for the following positions: County Engineer for public works, which is currently vacant; County Attorney Matthew Bracken; Prosecuting Attorney Justin Kollar and the manager and chief engineer for the Department of Water, Bryan Weinand.

Managing Director Michael Dahilig is up for an 11.8 percent raise.

Those percentages translate to an average increase of about $10,000. All told, the proposal would cost taxpayers an extra $316,586. The most recent pay raise for these positions was in 2016.

The full list is included in the online version of this article.

The county council turned down a similar proposal two years ago that asked for salary increases even smaller than the one up for consideration today.

In 2017, the council rejected Resolution 2017-2, which called for a 2.5 percent raise in the maximum allowable salaries for the same list of positions.

For over 10 years now, the county’s salary commission has been recommending raises for these positions, proposing that they be completed in three phases, according to a memorandum submitted to the council earlier this month along with the new proposal.

“Unfortunately, in 2008, the economy collapsed, along with state and county revenues. Except for raises to the Police Chief, Deputy Police Chief, Fire Chief and Deputy Fire Chief, no raises were given between 2008 and 2015,” the salary commission’s memo explains.

The council meeting starts at 8:30 a.m. in the Historic County Building.


Editor’s note: This story was corrected to note that the county engineer for public works is currently vacant.

  1. Kauaidoug March 27, 2019 6:37 am Reply

    Now we know who can afford to buy new 3 4 bedroom homes on Kaua’i who already live here. Don’t run for office if you don’t like the pay! Are some of these positions the ones we read about juicing there retirement / pension earnings with overtime? Give me a break, no wait, give me a raise.

  2. LMat March 27, 2019 9:02 am Reply

    Absolutely RIDICULOUS. Kauai, look around you. Does the roads you drive on, the neighborhoods you live in, the services you receive, justify this kind of merit increases for these people?! Even without the increase, these guys are getting payed six figures!!! What an absolute joke.

    TGI, why only report on this now? Council is meeting TODAY. If this was reported a week ago, the public would have been able to write or speak to council members or send in testimony!!

  3. Joe Public March 27, 2019 10:48 am Reply

    I do not think that they need a pay raise yet..they just raised our taxes and do not see any major changes on the island.

    Wait a few years to see if they get anything done before giving any of them a raise.

  4. I saw a Vampire once March 27, 2019 2:11 pm Reply

    Ross Kagawa and Mason chock is not worth $67,000 per year. They make way less and not enough to pay the main bills. If are paying any bills.

  5. Raises March 28, 2019 12:59 am Reply

    They just gave themselves over 10% raise a year ago. Wouldn’t the private sector just get excited every year if they can reject a 2.5% raise then get a 10-11% raise a year. So now we all know where the general excise tax is going to a select few. This is outrageous and another tax scheme will be created in a few years to give these do nothings another 10-15% raise.

    The cost of living doesn’t rise 10-11% so what gives? Have they earned this pay raise? And don’t tell me or anyone else they are in tune with other Island pay because Kauai has half the population of the Big Island, almost 3 times less than Maui, and 13 times less population than Oahu.

    Raises! What raises? Do they deserve raises per performance and audit reports? I not only think not but fell like the people just got robbed.

  6. JustGotAraise March 28, 2019 2:23 am Reply

    Just got a raise of over 10-14% last year.

    The former Mayor’s biggest send off before he left was to give these same positions over 10% raises.

    Now the new incoming Mayor and council gives themselves raises 100 days into the new administration? WTF over? Are you serious? More of the same BS and nothing gets done!

    Are you fricking serious now people are really struggling to make ends meet and they have to work multiple jobs and on top of that the state and county wants to raise taxes to pay for incompetence per HawaiiDOT audit, county audits as well the Rail investigations, and the public corruption case on Oahu.

    You got to be kidding right now. The county get a big fat “F” for failure! What have they done to reward themselves such a pay increase?

  7. Fix the future March 28, 2019 8:55 am Reply

    The average teacher salary is $59,000. This is the average salary for those people who are educating our future. When the County of Kauai pays council members $10,000 more than teachers, for a secondary job, there is something wrong.

    On another note, council members and the mayor ran on the platform of affordable housing and fixing traffic congestion. How about one of the council members be a hero and say, “let’s use the money that we would get in raises and pay overtime for the contraflow cones to be place on weekends and holidays”. Nothing has been said about affordable housing.

  8. Makani B. Howard March 28, 2019 9:57 am Reply

    Wish I could give myself a raise! Wow! What a cush job if you can get it! What a joke these people are!!! They sit around these high and mighty tables, looking down and you, hold the power, give themselves money, ……kinda sound like kings to me! hahahah They do about as much work as kings, too!

  9. PROraise March 29, 2019 6:40 am Reply

    All you haters, don’t be so daft!! There are a good handful of people listed that are WELL DESERVING & have the proper EDUCATION to have such an income. Most of you dingdongs don’t actually know the amount or type of work they do or the LONG HOURS they put in. Take a step back & be happy & encouraging to them!

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