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County step increases top $400K...so far in 2011

YAKIMA - While most Yakima County employees represented by a union agreed to a contract that did away with 3 percent step pay increases for this year, some unions have not reached a contract with the county for this year.

The result is that about 25 percent of the county's workforce of about 1,000 employees will still receive the step increases this year.

Judy Kendall is the human resources manager for the county, and as requested by county commissioners provided step pay figures at their meeting yesterday, Tuesday.

She noted that 91 employees received step increases in the third quarter of this year, with the total projected impact at $128,842 for additional pay, plus increased benefits that increase with the raise.

Year to date, Kendall says the step increases have a total budgetary impact of $424,753.

That figure does not include the fourth quarter of this year.

Kendall notes the step pay impact at this point last year was much higher - $758,990 - because all unions still received the increases.

As for why commissioners asked for the presentation when the raises had already been approved, Kendall said their goal is for the public to see what the step pay increases cost the county.

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