Our Opinion: Sheriff’s move is win-win

By EDITORIAL STAFF,

Let’s give a quick pat on the back to our new Sheriff Joedy Pennington. He’s been on the job as interim sheriff for a month and was sworn in officially last week as newly elected sheriff, beginning his first term officially on Jan. 1.

In a short period of time, he has been in office, he has put the deputies on regular 12-hour shifts and hired a few more part-time deputies. Those minor changes have helped the county achieve 24-hour service in the county. That means deputies will be on patrol around the clock.

The move not only keeps the county protected throughout the day and night, it also will save the county money because deputies will not be issued overtime. They’ll have a set schedule of when they work.

Also, the lack of overtime has also helped the deputies with the county’s 7K plan, a sliding-scale pay system in which deputies could see their hourly wage drop the more they work.

“I had full intention coming here and doing my best to get off 7K,” Pennington said. “But when we put shifts on, and a full-time deputy is only working 12 hours, and there’s no call outs, it’s a brand-new platform.”

It seems like a win-win situation for the everybody. County residents get the benefit of having deputies on patrol at all times. Deputies are happy because they have a set schedule and they don’t work overtime anymore, meaning they aren’t subject to the 7K plan that reduces their overtime hourly wages. And the county saves money because it has a consistent work schedule that won’t have the need for overtime.

We applaud Pennington for his hard work investigating this issue and solving the problem.