Loudoun County may be the richest county in the country. But don't tell that to those who work for the county or the county school system.
Loudoun supervisors on Tuesday unanimously voted against a 1 percent cost of living raise for county school employees.
The Loudoun County Public school system is seeking $530 million in local funding, and eliminating the raise would shave about $5.5 million off that figure, according to the Loudoun Times.
Vice Chairman Susan Klimek Buckley (D-Sugarland Run) proposed the cut in the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) and said she supported teachers, but “ I am not supporting the COLA increase because county employees aren’t getting a COLA increase,” the Times reported.
County government employees have already been told they will not see a pay increase for the second year in a row because supervisors are working to close a deficit of more than $190 million.
Supervisor Andrea McGimsey (D-Potomac) told the Times that skipping the teachers’ raise is only fair.
“All of our county employees work hard and they deserve raises ... the firefighters, the social workers, the sheriff’s deputies aren’t getting a raise this year,” McGimsey said, “and there shouldn’t be an imbalance.”
The Loudoun Education Association released a statement expressing disappointment in the decision and noting that County teacher salaries are already lower than in surrounding jurisdictions.
Klimek Buckley said she agrees Loudoun should bring its salaries in line with its neighbors, however, “Because of the dire economic situation that we’re in, we’re not in a position to make that change this year.”
Loudoun County recently topped Forbes Magazine’s list of the richest counties in the country. Loudoun families take home an average of about $110,000 a year, according to Forbes.