Cobb County commissioners have begun weighing a proposal by its citizen oversight committee to launch an exhaustive audit of county pay to assure competitive wages with the private sector.

The package’s estimated cost to taxpayers: $350,000.

The Cobb County Citizens Oversight Committee recommended a “comprehensive market study” to ensure the suburban county government does not fall to victim to a more generous compensation packages offered by private employers.

Even though the commission is unlikely to vote on the measure until the fall, it’s already drawing incensed opinion editorials.

“Here’s a recommendation for the Board of Commissions: Simply send out a questionnaire to your peer counties, for example, Gwinnett, Fulton and DeKalb, and ascertain heir respective pay scales, benefits — the compensation packages,” Don Mckee writes in today’s Marietta Daily Journal. “[T]he best part is that the cost would be probably less than $10 for postage — or zero if email is used — compared to that whopping $350,000 study by an outside consultant.”

Atlanta NBC affiliate WXIA is also soliciting public comments on the plan.

– James Richardson