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(Neb.)-Chadron Moves Forward Toward Phase II Of Stormwater Project, Selling City Lots

By: Roxie Graham-Marski Posted at: 05/07/2013 10:45 AM

Photo: At the Chadron city council meeting on Monday night, Boy Scout Troop 64 was awarded $400 by ACE, the Public Alliance for Community Energy, for their efforts in placing door hangers throughout the community to promote the Choice Gas Program. The Boy Scouts will most likely use the money to help off-set the costs of their trip to LaramiePeak this summer for Summer Camp. (Photo by KCSR-Roxie Graham-Marski)
(CHADRON)-It was a longer than normal city council meeting Monday night. The agenda boasted several big ticket items, but the one that took the longest time to sort through was the motion to discontinue the current education incentive benefit and to approve education assistance for city employees. Approximately 34 city employees currently receive the incentive, and the city proposed a few weeks back to roll the 1-4% increase individuals were receiving for having college education into their salary and do away with the separate line item with hopes of making it easier to take part in comparability studies with other communities. New employees then would not receive a separate incentive as such, but would not have to start at base pay either, and would instead start on a higher salary tier for their education and/or experience. That portion of the change was voted in by the council a few weeks ago.
            Several members and wives from the Chadron Police Department expressed their concern and annoyance at the possibility of having the incentive discontinued. The main concern seemed to stem from the fact that rolling the incentive into one’s salary will cause them to reach the maximum rate they are allowed to receive in any one position faster and thus causing a loss of money eventually. The council stressed that money was not being taken away; it was simply being rolled over into their salary to keep things more streamlined and evenly balanced between those with education and those with experience.            
           After much discussion from all sides, the council decided to move forward with the motion, voting to discontinue the education incentive 4-1 with council member John Gamby dissenting, and voted to approve education assistance 3-2 with council member Gamby and vice mayor Levi Grant the dissenting votes. The education assistance will provide up to $1,000 a year to select employees to help them further their education and gain skills to assist them in the workplace.
        In other news, the council decided to move ahead with the second phase of an agreement with the Leo A. Daly Company, which includes the final design for the city’s stormwater renovation project in the amount of $376,352 and bidding services for the project in the amount of $17,445. The city’s budget for the current fiscal year includes funds for the project’s engineering services, and next year’s budget will also have funds available. 
           The council also decided to move forward with the sale of city-owned property on East Niobrara Avenue. The council opted to suspend the statutory rules that require three readings of their intent to sell in order to speed up the process and hopefully allow new owners to begin building already this year if they wish. The 10 lots will be up for sale at a public auction to be held on Monday, June 17th, at City Hall. The starting bid on each lot will be $14,500.
(Questions? Comments? E-mail news@chadrad.com.)
(Copyright 2013 KCSR/Chadrad Communications, Inc. May not be reproduced in any form without permission.)


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