In a process requiring 11 votes, the Carroll County Board of Supervisors this morning approved 2.55 percent pay increases for the county's elected officeholders and 1.7 percent hikes for themselves.

The salary increases take effect July 1.

Supervisors Neil Bock, Gene Meiners and Mark Beardmore supported the 2.55 percent increase for county officeholders - who were considered separately from the Board of Supervisors pay. Supervisors Dan Nieland and Marty Danzer were opposed to that increase. The supervisors required 10 votes to set the county officeholder salary increases - votes that ranged from 2.25 percent to 3.25 percent hikes.

For their own salary increases the board took just one vote on the 1.7 percent increase.

Beardmore called for a pay freeze for the supervisors after supporting increases for other elected officials.

"I've not supported a raise so far" for supervisors pay, Beardmore said.

Nieland said he polled six businesses in Carroll and found that two are not providing raises and the other four have increases planned between 1.75 and 3.5 percent. Nieland also said he preferred to see dollar increases, not percentage raises, so the gap doesn't widen between higher earners in the county and those with less compensation.

The Carroll County Compensation Board last Thursday recommended a 3.25 percent pay increase for next fiscal year for all county elected officials. Board chairman Joe Halbur, a Carroll attorney, said the increase is in line with national economic considerations and confidential polling he did with nine Carroll County employers who provided information on employee salaries. Carroll County also ranks 32nd in population and 29th in elected-official pay, Halbur said,

The five compensation board members voting in favor of the recommendation Thursday were Halbur, Mary Bruner Rick Vanderheiden, Mike Franey and Clay Winterboer, all of Carroll. Jean Stadtlander of Manning and Dr. P.J. Greteman of Carroll were not present, although the board did read a letter from Greteman in which he called for an even higher increase for Sheriff Doug Bass to bring that position in line with the Carroll police chief's salary.

As of Jan. 1, Chief Jeff Cayler makes $77,063 annually. Bass makes $70,618. To bring those salaries in line board members would have had to approve a 9 percent increase for Bass.

Overall Danzer agreed with the 3.25 percent increase for county officeholders.

"I think we've got good employees, and I think we need to reward those employees," Danzer said.

Meiners made the case for 2.25 percent for officeholders and 2 percent for supervisors.

"I think this 3.25 percent is awfully generous myself," Meiners said.

The board delved into health-insurance issues this morning and expected costs associated with that to rise substantially. Bock said this factor needs to be considered as pay raises are set.

"I would go around the 2 percent (range) for everybody," Bock said.

The salary increases for the county elected officials are as follows: Supervisors Mark Beardmore, Gene Meiners, Neil Bock, Marty Danzer and Dan Nieland: $27,327 to $27,792; Auditor Joan Schettler, $59,062 to $60,568; Treasurer Peggy Weitl, $55,921 to $57,347; Recorder Marilyn Dopheide, $53,076 to $54,429; Sheriff Doug Bass, $70,618 to $72,419; and County Attorney John Werden, $62,129 to $63,713.

The compensation board's authority only extends to salary and does not reach into other benefit areas such as health insurance and retirement plans.