• 73°

Sheriff’s Certificate pay to be discussed in Executive Session

By Bobby Tingle

The Orange Leader

By a vote of three for and two against, Orange County Commissioners passed a motion to end certificate pay as a part of Sheriff’s compensation effective May 8, 2017.

Prior to the effective date, commissioners will meet in executive session to discuss the history of contract negotiations between commissioners and the Orange County Sheriff’s officers association. Commissioners plan to hold the executive session April 4. The decision also included taking action prior to May 8 to enter into contract negotiations. The terms of the prior contract, which expired some time in 2013, have been adhered to since the expiration date.

Commissioners Johnny Trahan and John Gothia voted against the motion while Commissioners Barry Burton and Jody Crump along with Judge Stephen Brint Carlton voted for the motion.

During the discussion phase, Gothia and Trahan expressed an interest in learning more about the history of certificate pay and contract negotiations in order to make informed decisions. Burton stressed the need to enter into contract negotiations and formalize a mutually agreeable solution.

Commissioners postponed action related to two items.

Closed meetings were held to discuss each. The first related to arbitration proceedings involving former Orange County Sheriff’s office employee, Kevin Tate. The second related to threatened litigation by the Freedom From Religion Foundation related to the American Legion war memorial displayed on the Courthouse lawn. No action was taken on either matter.