GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Pitt County Board of Commissioners held a public hearing on its latest budget Tuesday night. One person speaking out included Pitt County Sheriff Paula Dance.

The room started out full of deputies with the Pitt County Sheriff’s Office but ended with empty chairs before the meeting was over.

Dance asked for budget adjustments on behalf of her department, saying it would make the office whole if they were to get a 5% pay adjustment, 5% shift differential pay and a 6% cost of living.

Pitt County Manager Janis Gallagher said they exceeded the 5% and rolled it together with the differential, providing 6% to all law enforcement employees.

Many deputies spoke during the public hearing, in favor of Dance’s request.

Around an hour into the public hearing, the meeting went into recess while the commissioners and financial team calculated figures to see the difference in the budget if they were to give Dance what was asked.

The financial team said the difference would be between $1.7 million and $2 million.

The commissioners leaned toward approving the proposed budget while the sheriff’s office began to leave the room before the meeting was adjourned.

“You are never going to make everybody happy. So we have focused the budget team who’s done a fabulous job of pulling all this together,” said Gallagher before Tuesday’s vote. “We’ve kept our focus on what best serves the community and how we can afford to do that within available revenues.”

“[The budget] puts me at a disadvantage when I’m recruiting, to get people to come to our agency, when they can go up the street and make $5,000, $6,000, $7,000 more,” said Dance before the vote.

The Pitt County Board of Commissioners voted to approve their latest budget.