San Luis County Counsel seeking 20 percent pay raise

August 10, 2020


Less then one week after San Luis Obispo County administrators announced plans to eliminate 28 full-time positions because of a $26.3 million budget shortfall, the Board of Supervisors is set to approve a 21.38 percent increase in compensation for County Counsel Rita Neal from her previous contract.

On the consent agenda, county staff recommends a four-year contract extension for Neal, with an increase in salary and benefits of $66,000. The Board of Supervisors have already budgeted for Neal’s proposed raise in compensation, as well as the 28 positions they plan to eliminate.

The job cuts are being considered as part of $26.3 million in budget cuts due to a loss of revenue because of the coronavirus.

Neal, who has worked as County Counsel since 2012, is eyeing an increase in compensation from a $204,152 salary and $104,434 benefit package to $234,811 and $139,768 respectively, for a total of $374,579 a year.

Neal is responsible for overseeing the SLO County Counsel’s Office which is comprised of 14 lawyers and eight staff members. Her office provides legal advice to the Board of Supervisors, 26 county departments, and multiple outside agencies

In comparison, U.S. Attorney Nicola T. Hanna, the chief federal law enforcement officer for the Central District of California, oversees approximately 260 attorneys, and over 250 staff who serve over 19 million residents – half the state’s population. His salary without benefits is approximately $170,000.

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The raise thing is the best comedy I have read in a long time…

I was self-employed in SLO for 30 years. I wish I could have bumped my income by 20 % when I “needed” it.

My problem is that we are in a crisis and my opinion is that there has been a real lack of creativity or imagination in dealing with this. If I was in office I would use everything in my power to challenge Sacramento, reclaim money sent to the state from the county, ally with counties and cities all over the state to work together in litigation to protect our rights and make sure that businesses can stay open, function and make money. I thought raises were tied to performance.

“I thought raises were tied to performance.”

Now that is FUNNY!!!

a 10% raise while businesses are being shuttered by the dozen. Oh what a country, county rather.

To all those shocked at this, just remember that Rita knows where all the bodies are buried and there is an active FBI investigation going on. As counsel to the BOS and department heads, communication is privileged.

@ south,

That is a very good observation. Thank you for it.

let’s be honest here:

why are they doing this? because they can.

what will be the repercussions? none. Heidi will be re-elected and the voters of SLO will pass the tax increase.

sorry but you know it’s going to happen.

Apathy… A real bitch…

Unless your comment was meant to be ironic, you are a prime example of exactly why our county and city governments do what they do. They know they can get away with it. Complacent and compliant voters are the bread-and-butter of our governments.

If you really are fed up with what is being done; you would raise holy H–l and demand change – get 5 of your friends to do the same and have each of them get 5 more. ; etc. etc. But if you are truly a compliant and complacent voter who believes nothing can be done – then you get what you deserve. Don’t sit back and hope that someone else will do it for you. You can make a difference, if you want. The choice is yours.

Not complacent – just realistic. Heidi rolled in the last election and it’ll probably be by a wider margin this time. After all if you don’t vote for her you’ll likely be labeled as racist.

A woman called Dave’s show about a week ago and said she was convinced taxes had to be raised. Didn’t see anything that could be done. Look at the increases in the past, a simple examination showed it was a sham but they passed.

Why on earth is it allowed that public sector unions can spend millions to get pols elected and then “negotiate “ a new contract? How is that not a complete conflict of interest?

Numerous examples of mismanagement and shenanigans – people raise hell – for a while, but things go on, employees get Christmas bonuses, the next city whatever gets a big raise to “attract the best and the brightest”, pension costs just keep on climbing but the only overwhelming majority dont care and/or like what they choose to see.

And it’s not Red-blue thing – it’s madness.

BTW – don’t live in SLO – so I vote with my pocketbook. Won’t eat there or shop there and amazon doesn’t charge for parking.

It never occurs to some people that if more taxes are needed you could encourage the type of activity that generates the type of revenues that are taxed.Or find a way to balance the budget.