FERNLEY - Recognizing the difficulty public officials might have in setting their own salaries, county officials will look into establishing wage parameters for Fernley's first city council members.
Commissioner David Fulstone said those running for the new council positions should know there will be some compensation and asked the issue placed on the board's next agenda.
"It is something we should discuss. The expense of public service should not go unpaid. I don't think the salaries should be high, but they should at least be compensated," Fulstone noted. "It is hard to set your own salary. I would hate to have to have the City of Fernley make that decision right up front. They have the option of later raising or lowering it, or declining it."
Fulstone said Yerington city councilmen are paid $300 per month. The mayor earns $600 a month.
Fernley Attorney Rebecca Harold, however, questioned whether there was anything in the statutes that would authorize the commissioners to set the council's wages.
Incorporation committee member Kevin Brazell agreed with Harold, but suggested commissioners research the salary range of other Nevada cities and "Set something out there that is the range or vision.
"I believe it would be an injustice in Fernley if we get a council in there that has to set its own salaries and they feel pressured to do it for $1 a year, or end up getting thrown out of office because they set the salaries too high."
In other business:
- Based on the impending creation of a Fernley City Court, Commissioners agreed the Canal Township Justice of the Peace salary should be reduced from a four-day to a three-day week. The new justice will earn a base salary of $36,000 per year.
Commissioner LeRoy Goodman said the workload could be looked at in the future.
"It is very possible the Canal Township Justice of the Peace, whoever that may be, would also be contracting with the city," he said.
The decision is effective upon the March 6 election of a replacement for deceased Canal Justice Steve Lehman.
- Upon the recommendation of Assistant District Attorney Steve Rye, the commissioners determined it was not necessary to create an ordinance merging the 318 Fernley Swimming Pool District into the City of Fernley boundaries Rye said there are properties within the pool district that are not in the city's boundaries, making the Nevada laws requiring such a merger inapplicable.