Florida’s election supervisors are getting a raise.
Senate bill 0514, passed by the Florida legislature and signed by the governor earlier this year, will increase the pay of the 67 Florida supervisors of elections.
Within each county, the supervisor of elections will now be paid the same as the clerk of court, property appraiser and tax collector. In the past, the position paid about 20 percent less than the others.
The average increase in salary is about $19,000. Currently, the position pays between $76,191 (Liberty County) and $162,723 (Miami-Dade County).
The population of the county determines compensation, which will now be between $93,470 and $182,954, according to data from the Florida Legislature’s Office of Economic and Demographic Research.
Clay County Supervisor of Elections, Chris Chambless, who also serves as president of the Florida State Association of Supervisor of Elections, stressed his concern for pay equity among constitutional officers.
“I spoke with my specific legislators and spoke to the importance of having a pay parity bill to where the clerk of court, the property appraiser, the tax collector and the supervisor of elections were compensated the same, regardless of gender,” said Chambless.
Chambless said the disparity has existed since the 1960s — a time when the position was viewed as a woman’s job that did not require equal compensation.
Wesley Wilcox, the Marion County elections supervisor, said he always wondered why there was a difference in pay among the set of elected county officials.
“I think it’s just taken a long time for probably just the information to seek its way to the top, and as our society goes, more and more things that are unequal are becoming equal,” Wilcox said.
Gilchrist County Supervisor of Elections Connie Sanchez said she thinks pay was less for the position because people “just thought that the supervisors didn’t work but two or three times every other year.”
Now, with more ways for residents to vote, such as vote-by-mail, Sanchez said that this could have influenced the decision on pay equity.
Chambless said most supervisor of elections are not in it for the money, but for the love of the job and helping the county.
The change comes just weeks before election supervisor’s busiest time of the year— the last day to register to vote is Oct. 11—Election Day is Nov. 8.