Thursday, May 26, 2016 – 02:30 p.m.

San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputies have fallen into the ranks of some of the lowest compensated in Southern California.

It’s a place the group hasn’t been in since 1996.

This week some of the members of the San Bernardino County Safety Employees’ Benefit Association (SEBA) protested in front of the Board of Supervisors.

It’s a move that should have happened long ago, and at this point is meaningless.

Even though the union has retained a paid political advisor, and for some unknown reason found it necessary to hire a full-time public relations representative, with really no public relations experience, the group can’t muster county support of an arbitration panel-recommended nine-percent raise over three years.

Some time ago, I said that trying to lob off the head of Chief Executive Officer Greg Devereaux, not to mention moving to attack and embarrass the Board of Supervisors, was stupid and would prove unsuccessful.

Well. Here they are today.

The union has dropped down to begging for any compensation increase county supervisors are willing to throw their way.

An amount not even close to the high double-digit percentage needed to move toward a competitive parity. But any raise!

Forget about restoration of previously surrendered give-backs that significantly-damaged the rank-and-file compensation package.

Twenty years ago the union was in a similar situation. But not as bad as today.

Today the union can’t count to three county supervisor votes. As a matter of fact they can barely count to a lukewarm one.

How this all happened has to be explained. It’s either fear, ineptitude or self-service.

But one thing is clear. The union’s rank-and-file members deserve better.

It’s time for county supervisors and administrators to ignore the union’s political ineptitude, set aside any bad feelings, and adopt the recent arbitration award.

It’s the right thing to do.