Shelby Co. (ECWd) –
The first article we published on this matter is found at this link and we encourage everyone to read it to grasp the facts of the story.
As of today’s publication, the Treasurer has not receive any supporting documentation for the rate of pay change submitted by Stacy Prosser.
We requested several things and received them yesterday.
1. A copy of all board-approved wage increases for Stacey Prosser in the last 3 months.
Response: “There are no records in this office for a board-approved wage increase for Stacy Prosser in the last 3 months.”
2. A copy of all current contracts and agreements for employment between the County and Stacy Prosser.
Response: “This is the only documentation on file in this office for Stacy Prosser’s employment with the County of Shelby. Please note these are not legal binding contracts or agreements due to non-existing bilateral signatures. See attached documents.”
3. A copy of all documentation authorizing a pay increase for Stacy Prosser in the last 30 days.
Response: “There is no documentation in this office authorizing a pay increase for Stay Prosser in the last 30 days.”
The record that was provided (click here), does not support any kind of change in pay rate as submitted and it appears the response proves they know there was no authorization.
What was sent to the treasurer (click here) by the secretary at the highway department exposes even more problems.
Specifically, the justification for the rate change submitted by the secretary is not supported by a single document, including the union contract.
“Once a laborers base pay rate reaches within a certain dollar amount of the foreman’s base pay rate, then a pay increase awarded to the laborer results in an equal pay increase to the foreman of the department. We provided a pay increase sheet for the laborer along with the pay increase with the equal value for the foreman ($.54) on July 10th. See attached documents. To be clear, NO pay increase was or will be awarded to Stacy Prosser for the allotted responsibilities as Acting County Engineer.”
There is no documented authorization for the above-explained rationale for a rate of pay increase.
The second part of the email to the treasurer touches on a subject we were already working on, another failure by the County Board Chairman.
“Due to the department head vacancy, there was no signature provided on the payroll or pay increase sheets. When we receive approval from the State authorizing Stacy Prosser as Acting County Engineer signatures will be provided upon payroll submittal.”
When we receive approval……
The county board chairman claimed to have read the rules on the appointment of an acting highway engineer and even wrongly claimed it could be anyone appointed to the position.
What does the law say about such an appointment?
(605 ILCS 5/5-204) (from Ch. 121, par. 5-204)
Sec. 5-204. Whenever the office of county superintendent of highways is vacant, the county board may with the consent in writing of the Department appoint any competent person as acting county superintendent of highways until the vacancy is filled in the manner provided in Section 5-201.
The plain reading of the statute makes it clear that the appointment may be done with consent in writing of the Department (IDOT), and the person must be competent. Did Chairman Bryon Coffman have written consent when he made the appointment of Stacy Prosser as acting highway engineer for the county?
The answer is clear by simply looking at the required authorization documents (click here). Not only did Coffman appoint prior to having written consent the first time Prosser was appointed, but he doubled down and did it again without the required written consent. This points to a disregard for the law.
As far as being able to appoint anyone, that is not accurate as claimed by Coffman. The person being appointed must be competent. While the term competent is not defined, most would understand that to mean the person has the needed working knowledge of the position. Where this should become a concern is when this appointed person issues a rate of pay increase for himself without any supporting documentation, just as we stated in our first article. We are of the opinion a competent person would not do what Prosser did.
We understand Prosser submitted a letter of withdrawal from his appointment the day after our first article on this. We have requested the letter and will update this article when we receive it. UPDATED: Prosser Withdrawal Letter
The question we have for the County Board is simple. Are there any repercussions for submitting rate of pay increases that are not supported by any documentation or approval?
While we believe several board members will do the right thing and work to fix this matter, we stand by our original position that there will be members who choose to reward Prosser and ignore what he did.