"BRING ME THE HEAD OF ROBERT GRAHAM" - Clamor Reaches Greater Heights

(03/26/2004)

By Bob Weaver

"Bring me the head of Robert Graham" was the cry in Charleston yesterday after further disclosures revealed the Wyoming County senior center director is making about $458,000 for his business expertise.

Some lawmakers were calling for a special session.

The "salary" includes overtime, a Christmas bonus and cashed-in sick, annual and personal leave.

Previous reports had put Graham's total compensation at $302,000.

The average for such a position in the state is about $42,000, although if the top two executives (Wyoming and Lincoln) are removed from the average, the salary base is about $35,000.

Senate Minority Leader Vic Sprouse says lawmakers should look into capping the salaries of directors of senior centers that receive Medicaid funding.

Senior centers are operated under independent non-profit boards.

Berkeley County Senator John Unger says there's obviously a lack of checks and balances with the system.

Virtually everyone associated with the Wyoming center are saying they did not know about Graham's salary, including Wyoming's state senator who was an employee of the center and helped obtain about $400,000 from the Budget Digest for the agency.

The Bureau of Senior Services however did release over 100-pages of financial information to the Hur Herald.

An attorney for the Wyoming Council on Aging says the executive summary of a state report appears misleading in some areas.


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