Article 3 – The Pay Plan

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Section 301    Adoption

The salary schedule, reflecting both grade level and step, shall be approved annually by the Board of Commissioners.

Section 302    Maintenance of the Pay Plan

The County Manager shall be responsible for the administration and maintenance of the pay plan. The pay plan is intended to provide equitable compensation for all positions when considered in relation to each other, to general rates of pay for similar employment in the private and public sector in the area, to changes in the cost of living, to financial conditions of the County, and other factors.  To this end, the County Manager shall, from time to time, make comparative studies of all factors affecting the level of salary ranges and shall recommend to the Board of Commissioners such changes in salary ranges as are warranted.

Section 303    Administration of the Pay Plan

The pay plan shall be administered in a fair and systematic manner in accordance with work performed. The pay structure shall be externally competitive, shall maintain proper internal relationships among all positions based on relative duties and responsibilities, and shall recognize performances as the basis for pay increases within the established pay range.  The classification plan shall meet the requirements of the State Competitive System for local government employees, while maintaining a County-wide plan.

Section 304    Hiring Rate/Starting Salary

Employees will be hired at Step 1 of their assigned salary grade. Appointments above Step 1 may be made by the County Manager when deemed necessary to the best interests of the County, based on such factors as superior qualifications of the applicant, a shortage of qualified applicants available at the hiring rate, or any other lawful, non-discriminatory reason.  In addition, the County Manager may make appointments above Step 1 to individuals hired in certain classifications, such as those in Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Law Enforcement and Building Inspections, that hold applicable licenses, certifications, registrations and/or have other highly specialized training. Any appointment above the Standard Job Rate (Step 3) must be approved by the Board of Commissioners.

Section 305    Progression to the Standard Job Rate

Upon completion of six months of satisfactory service, the employee will be elevated to Step 2 of the salary schedule. Upon satisfactory completion of six months at Step 2, the employee will be elevated to Standard Job Rate (Step 3) of the assigned salary range. If an employee was hired at a level higher than Step 1, such as in those situations as outlined in Section 304, then he or she will progress to the step that follows the hire rate, assuming he or she meets the other requirements for progression.

Section 306    Failure to Perform Satisfactorily

An employee who fails to perform satisfactorily, whether during the probationary period or during advancement from Step 1 to Step 2 or from Step 2 to Step 3 (the Standard Job Rate), will be denied the scheduled salary increase. Appropriate disciplinary action may be taken by the Department Head in accordance with Article 9 of this resolution.  Employees who have advanced to the Standard Job Rate (Step 3) will be required to perform at a satisfactory level or be subject to disciplinary action.

Section 307    Delay of Performance Evaluation

An employee’s absence from work due to sick leave, leave without pay, Workers’ Compensation, or any other authorized leave is cause for the Department Head to request an extension for the annual performance evaluation review, so as to allow adequate time for evaluation of performance.

Section 308    Longevity Pay Plan

The Longevity Pay Plan is a retention program to keep experienced employees in whom the County has made substantial investments in time and training.

After the successful completion of five successive years of permanent full-time or permanent part-time employment with the County of Currituck, an employee becomes eligible for longevity pay on the anniversary date of the 5th year of continuous employment. For clarification purposes, only permanent part-time employees that work a minimum of thirty or more hours per week are eligible for the longevity increase. The eligible employee will receive this percentage increase each year and the percentage will cumulatively increase every three year time period which is based upon the employee’s date of hire.

Elected and appointed officials are not eligible to participate in the Longevity Pay Plan.

After 5 years of continuous full-time or continuous eligible part-time service the employee will be evaluated by the Department Head for consideration of a percentage increase based upon the employee’s current grade/step. Leave-without-pay (LWOP) will alter an employee’s eligibility date by the same period of time the employee was out on LWOP. An employee must have received  satisfactory annual evaluations to receive recommendation for percentage increases.  If an eligible employee is due for a longevity increase and receives a negative annual evaluation the supervisor will reevaluate and document the employee’s performance on the next annual evaluation date. Provided the employee’s work performance has been satisfactory during the reevaluation period the supervisor may recommend the longevity increase be received on this respective annual review date. The Department Head will submit the recommendation to the County Manager for final action.

The Longevity Pay Plan Table is listed below:

Years of Service

5-7 years of service
8-10 years of service
11-13 years of service
14-16 years of service
17-19 years of service
20-22 years of service
23-25 years of service
26-28 years of service
29-31 years of service

Percentage Added to Base Salary


Section 309   Trainee Salaries

An applicant hired, or employee promoted to a position in a higher class, who does not meet all the established requirements of the position, shall be appointed with the approval of the County Manager at a pay rate of one (1) step below the minimum salary. Employees subject to the Human Resources Act will be designated “trainees” in accordance with rules and regulations established by the Office of Human Resources.  All other County employees shall be designated “trainees” based upon recommendations of the Department Head with the approval of the County Manager.  An employee in a trainee status shall continue to receive a reduced salary until the appointing Department Head and the County Manager determine that the trainee is qualified to assume the full responsibilities of the position.

Section 310    Pay Rates in Promotion, Demotion, Transfer, and Reclassification

When an employee is promoted, demoted, transferred, or reclassified, the rate of pay for the new position shall be established as follows:

  1. When a promotion occurs, the employee’s salary shall be increased, if it is below the new minimum, to the minimum rate of the salary range assigned to the class to which he or she is promoted. If an employee’s current salary is already above the new minimum salary rate, his or her salary may be adjusted one step upward or left unchanged at the discretion of the County Manager, provided that the adjusted salary does not exceed the maximum of the assigned salary range.
  2. If an employee is demoted for cause, the employee’s salary will be reduced to any step in the salary range for the new position, as long as the reduced salary does not fall below the minimum salary rate of that range.
  3. When a transfer occurs from a position in one class to a position in another class, assigned to the same pay range, the employee shall continue to receive the same salary.
  4. When a position is reclassified at a higher salary grade, the employee’s salary shall be adjusted to the standard job rate of the new grade or maintained at their current step if lower than the standard job rate. If the employee’s current salary is already above the standard job rate, his or her salary may be adjusted one step upward or left unchanged at the discretion of the County Manager, provided that the adjusted salary does not exceed the maximum of the assigned salary range.
  5. When a position is reclassified to a lower grade the existing employee’s salary will remain the same until general schedule adjustments or range
Section 311    Pay Rates in Salary Range Revisions

If the Board of Commissioners approves a change in salary range for a class of positions, the salaries of employees whose positions are allocated to that class shall be affected as follows:

  1. When a class of positions is assigned to a higher pay range, employees in that class may receive a one-step pay increase or an increase to the minimum step of the new range, whichever is higher.
  2. When a class of positions is assigned to a lower pay range, the salaries of employees in that class will remain unchanged. If this assignment to a lower pay range results in an employee being paid at a rate above the maximum step established for the new class, the salary of the employee shall be maintained at that level until such time as the employee’s pay range is increased above the employee’s current salary.
Section 312    Pay for Part-Time Work

Compensation of any employee appointed for less than forty (40) hours a week shall be computed on an hourly basis.

Section 313    Overtime

  1. The County abides by all applicable sections of the Fair Labor Standards Act. The County will properly record all applicable overtime accrued for each covered employee. This overtime policy is applicable only to employees of Currituck County who are non-exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
  2. Employees are expected to work during all assigned periods exclusive of mealtimes. Employees are not to perform work during mealtimes or at any time that they are not scheduled to work, unless they receive approval from their immediate supervisor, except in cases of emergency. An emergency exists if a condition arises that could reasonably result in damage to property or persons or that requires immediate attention of the employee. Employees who work excess hours due to an emergency shall advise their immediate supervisor of the overtime worked as soon as practical following completion of the work. Public safety emergency responders, i.e. Law Enforcement, Fire and EMS are expected to appropriately respond to all emergency calls for their service as defined by their department’s policies and practices.
  3. It is the policy of the County, in agreement with its employees, that non-exempt employees receive compensatory time off at a rate of one and one-half hours for each hour of overtime worked. Department Heads should ensure compensatory time is used before accrued sick and vacation leave. In addition Department Heads may send employees with accrued comp time balances home when their departments are experiencing slower work periods. Non-exempt employees who do not work in law enforcement activities, emergency response activities, or seasonal activities, may accrue not more than 240 hours of compensatory time for overtime hours worked after April 15, 1986.
  4. The following non-exempt employees will be paid as follows:
    • Law Enforcement and Jail staff will be paid overtime at a rate of one and a half times their regular hourly rate for all hours exceeding 171 in a 28 day work period.
    • EMS operations staff and the Communication staff will be paid overtime at a rate of one and a half times their regular hourly rate for all hours worked exceeding forty hours in a work week.
    • Non-exempt employees who work in emergency response activities or seasonal activities will be paid overtime at a rate of one and a half times their regular hourly rate for all hours worked exceeding forty hours in a work week.
  5. A  Department Head may request to have employees working on special assignments paid for hours worked on these assignments above their standard work hours. Pay for special assignments must be approved by the County Manager. Pay for special assignments will also be subject to the overtime rates as stated above, depending on the employee class.
  6. Non-exempt law enforcement employees will be paid at a rate of one and a half times their hourly rate for all ATV duty regardless of other hours worked.
  7. Employees wishing to use accrued compensatory time must make a written request to their immediate supervisor. Use of such time will be allowed within a reasonable period following the request as long as the use does not unduly disrupt the operations of the County.
Section 314    Payroll Deductions

Federal and State income taxes, Social Security tax, withholding for court-ordered child support payments (upon receipt of appropriate notices to withhold or by order of a court of competent jurisdiction), and retirement contributions shall be deducted as authorized by law and the Board of Commissioners. Local Government Credit Union deductions and County-authorized insurance coverage requested by the employee and not paid by the County may also be deducted upon written request of the employee. Payroll deductions to correct a clerical error in prior pay or to collect un-reconciled employee expenses may also be deducted from employee’s pay.  Any other payroll deduction must be approved by the Board of County Commissioners.

Section 315    Payroll Procedure

All employees shall be paid on a bi-weekly basis through direct deposit, with Wednesday as the designated payday. If the designated payday falls on either a County or Federal holiday, the payday will be the last County working day prior to the holiday. However, if January 1 falls on normally designated payday the following business day will be the designated payday.

Section 316    Effective Date of Salary Adjustments

Salary adjustments shall become effective the first full pay period following the salary adjustment.

Revised March 21, 2022