Dallas County debate on custodial pay gets heated - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Dallas County debate on custodial pay gets heated

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DALLAS - A debate over whether commissioners can give contract workers $10.25 an hour led one commissioner to walk out of Dallas County Commissioners Court Tuesday morning.

"I'm gonna excuse myself while you debate this issue and then you can determine whether or not it's a violation of the open meetings act," said Commissioner Mike Cantrell.

Cantrell walked out of the meeting as commissioners, led by Judge Clay Jenkins, discussed whether they could change a bid for outside janitorial services from $9 an hour to $10.25 an hour.

The debate centered over whether commissioners could do that when state law requires them to accept the lowest and best bid.

"A single person with two dependents making less than $10.25 an hour cannot qualify for health care subsidy, which means that they cannot get health care other than going to Parkland or some emergency room. I just think if you work 40 hours a week you should be able to pay for the basic necessities of life," Jenkins said.

Commissioner Cantrell's concern was whether there court could change dollar amounts in a contract that had gone through the bid procedure and whether that would violate state law.

Other commissioners agreed with Cantrell and the custodial contract at $9 an hour was awarded.

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