Even as North Carolina’s teachers are seeing no pay increases and an ending to bonus pay for achieving advanced degrees and certifications, Governor McCrory’s appointees and staff continue to get raises- over $1.7 million in raises. Making matters worse this follows the Governor’s public request that department heads freeze pay raises to cover what his administration claimed would be Medicaid shortfalls. Irony abounds now that WRAL is reporting that state personnel records show the agency that oversees Medicaid, the Department of Health and Human Services, gave out hefty raises anyway, especially to the governor’s former campaign staffers. The raises include one to Anthony Vellucci who is overseeing the NC Fast program. Issues with the NC Fast handover have left working poor and poor citizens hungry across the state while Velluci saw his pay increase.
According to reporting by WRAL:
WRAL News found 280 full-time workers at DHHS who have received raises totaling $1.7 million since the governor’s directive. Also, some of those receiving raises have no career or educational experience for the jobs they hold. The information on state salaries comes from BEACON, the state government payroll system.
Mark Gogal, director of human resources for DHHS, pointed out that total is equal to 0.25 percent of the total agency payroll.
“Those increases were allowed under the governor’s memo for promotions at that time,” Gogal said, adding the DHHS total payroll budget is down $21 million from the same time last year.
Matthew McKillip, 24, makes $87,500 a year as a senior policy planner at DHHS. He received a $22,500 raise on April 1.
McKillip, who worked on McCrory’s campaign, has no educational background or experience in health policy on his resume, although he did work briefly at a conservative think tank.
Jason Simmons, 35, is also a policy planner at DHHS. He also received a $22,500 raise in April and now earns $62,500 year.
Simmons was a campaign operative for 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney before going to work for McCrory, but his available information also shows no educational background or experience in health policy.
Ricky Diaz, 24, is a public relations officer at DHHS. He got a $23,000 raise in April and now makes $85,000 a year.
Diaz was McCrory’s campaign press secretary and worked in his press office before going to DHHS. His available information shows no educational background or experience in health policy and little experience in communications, with most of that in online and social media.
Anthony Vellucci, the information technology director for NC FAST, received a $23,000 raise in June and now earns $168,000 a year. Vellucci does have an IT background, but the raise comes amid an array of problems with the social services benefits system that has left many hungry families without food stamps.
You can read the rest at WRAL HERE.