The Ohio County Commission released a statement on Tuesday that they expressed disappointment by the deputies who sued the Ohio County Commission

In a statement the Commission said it is ‘ particularly troubling to learn that the Sheriff of Ohio County has stated that he was “completely blindsided” by these lawsuits filed by his deputies.’

The Ohio County Commission also said that they looking forward to the opportunity to and will defend itself vigorously in a court of law.

Ohio County employees filed three separate lawsuits on December 5 against the Ohio County Commission alleging improper wage and payment issues.

In the first complaint, 29 Ohio County sheriff’s deputies allege that they were denied at least one week of pay due to a payroll change. The plaintiffs allege they have been denied at least one week’s pay by way of the county switching the payroll to being paid ahead by two days to be being paid entirely in arrears.

In the second complaint, 31 county employees claim they were improperly paid during the COVID-19 pandemic, alleging that other county employees received full pay but worked half the hours when the plaintiffs did not. The plaintiffs allege they should have been paid the same as other county employees during COVID, that is to work half the hours for full pay.

This complaint alleges that then-Ohio County Administrator Greg Stewart told county employees at the start of the pandemic in March 2020 that they could work rotating shifts for distancing but that they would still receive their normal pay. Many employees in this group were sheriff’s deputies who allege they were not paid properly and only received a $1,000 hero pay in April 2020.

In the third complaint, 16 workers allege they were forced to use their own paid sick time to comply with county COVID quarantine policy or otherwise not coming to work when the reason they could not come to work was caused by a work event.