WARE SHOALS — Ware Shoals municipal employees will receive their first pay raise in more than three years.
The Ware Shoals Town Council voted unanimously to provide a merit pay raise of four percent to the employees of the administrative, public works, sewer, water and wastewater departments in the next fiscal year's budget. The 2014-15 fiscal year budget begins July 1.
"It's a merit raise, not a cost-of-living raise," town clerk Heather Fields said. "We've never received a merit raise and our last cost-of-living raise was four years ago."

Also on the subject of merit raises, council voted unanimously to adopt a formal personnel policy regarding yearly evaluations and possible raises.
"I don't think I've been in a job where I wasn't getting evaluated at least once a year if not twice a year or even quarterly," councilwoman Patty Walters said.
The evaluations will be done by each department head with department heads evaluated by their respective town council committees.
A policy for reviews was placed but with no set time frame for the reviews required, reviews had "fallen by the wayside," Fields said.