Sheriff Brisolara criticizes supervisors

Harrison County Sheriff Melvin Brisolara told the Sun Herald he “called bullsh--” to the Board of Supervisors last year when they refused to pick up longevity pay for sheriff’s office employees because they couldn’t afford them for other county employees.

Brisolara gave veteran employees additional money last year based on their years of service as an incentive. The extra pay came from drug-forfeiture money and totalled about $300,000. It gave longterm employees $1,000 or more per year.

The sheriff said supervisors had agreed to add that amount to his budget for the current year, but changed their minds over budget concerns. Supervisors noted there wasn’t money in county coffers to give other employees longevity pay.

“I called bullsh--,” Brisolara said, pointing to the supervisors’ discretionary account and other possible sources of money.“If they would streamline their own offices and get rid of non-essential personnel, they could afford to offer it to other employees, too,” he said.

Brisolara said he cut out the longevity pay “because they fought me so hard on it.”

Read more Thursday's Sun Herald.

-- Robin Fitzgerald/Sun Herald