If you were worried that Guilford County Sheriff Danny Rogers wouldn’t be able to continue to afford his habit of buying flashy cowboy hats and silk vests, worry no more. Rogers will have plenty of money to buy those hats, purple vests and anything else he wants.

Likewise for two other less flashy dressers – Guilford County Elections Director Charlie Collicutt and Guilford County Register of Deeds Jeff Thigpen.

These may be times when the country is on the brink of a recession – but the county commissioners showed no signs of that as they set the new wages for the three department heads. The Democratic Board of Commissioners, led by Chairman Skip Alston, must like the work that the three employees are doing because, after the board came out of closed session at the end of its Thursday, Nov. 17 meeting, the commissioners voted to approve enormous raises for all three men.

The board went into a closed session at the end of the November 17 meeting and came back about an hour later – when the meeting room was vacant except for the Rhino Times reporter and two county staffers. Also, it is likely anyone watching on TV had stopped watching the meeting due to the one-hour closed session.

While most county department heads work under the county manager, a handful of directors, including these three, have their salaries set each year by the Board of Commissioners.

Roger’s salary, which has been $176,303 annually, was increased to $204,837.

Register of Deeds Jeff Thigpen saw his annual salary increase from $140,191 to $152,700.

But those two have nothing on Guilford County Board of Elections Director Charlie Collicutt, who was making $116,082 a year and will now be pulling in $142,413 annually. That’s a 22 percent salary increase in a single year.

In the case of Collicutt, the Guilford County Board of Elections makes a recommendation to the Board of Commissioners as to what his raise should be, and, this year, the commissioners went above and beyond what the elections board recommended for Collicutt.

Alston told the Rhino Times after the raises were approved that, in part, Collicutt’s raise was due to the fact that running elections in the current political environment had become much more difficult than in previous years.