This program is intended to recognize the value of providing support for volunteer members of boards and commissions who bring lived experience to their volunteer service and who face economic barriers to participation.

The Board of County Commissioners recognizes the importance of including the expertise of residents with lived experience. Further, it acknowledges that some community members with lived experience may face economic barriers to participation in local government activities. 

The Commissioners desire to reduce these obstacles to participation by establishing a stipend program.  

This program can provide a stipend not to exceed $500 per year may be provided, as long as the stipend complies with state and federal law and does not:

  1. interfere with the protections extended to volunteers by the federal Volunteer Protection Act of 1997 or 
  2. create an employment relationship between the volunteer and the County. 

These stipends will only be provided to individuals with lived experience, which does not include professional experience in a technical field that may be required or beneficial as a board member, and those who face economic barriers to participation in local government activities. 

Any stipends provided will not be tied to actual hours volunteered. However, stipends are subject to federal tax withholding, and board members requesting the stipend will be required to provide tax identification information if approved.

How will this work?

  1. Applicants for a board or commission appointment will apply as usual by submitting a Board Application.  The Commissioner liaison assigned to the board will review all applications, conduct interviews and make selection decisions for board membership.
  2. Once selected, appointed board members will be able to complete the Stipend Program Application.  Individuals requesting a stipend must indicate on the application that failure to receive such stipend may prevent them from participating as a volunteer board member.
  3. Requests for stipends under this program will be reviewed by the staff liaison assigned to the board or commission and the County Manager.   Stipends are subject to federal tax withholding.  Once approved, applicants will be asked to provide required documentation to their board staff liaison to receive the stipend.

Other direct support that could be offered to further remove barriers to participation will be evaluated during this time.