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(Neb.)-Chadron City Council Discusses Salary Schedule And More

By: Roxie Graham-Marski Posted at: 10/22/2013 12:30 PM

(CHADRON)-The city of Chadron officially has a new employee salary schedule for the 2013-2014 Fiscal Year. The council spent extensive time discussing the various facets of the proposal that made it before them another time after revisions from the last city council meeting. Although no one fully seemed to feel as if the finished product was exactly the way they would have liked, Mayor Karin Fischer said she felt that both the council and the city had negotiated and offered up compromise for the sake of moving forward. Vice mayor Levi Grant, who was visibly agitated by what he said was the continual “give and give and give” to city employees, went on to say it was disgusting that no negotiation was taking place and that the employees seemed to be running the show. Council member John Gamby said he thought the process had been made much more confusing than it needed to be, while council member Bill Barth said he felt that eventually cities will just have to pink slip long-term employees and start over with new employees because the salary caps in place never quit growing. City manager Wayne Andersen said the policy that was presented to the council had many changes in it that the council had requested and that he did not feel it was exorbitant, but rather fair and equitable.
 
The council voted on seven separate sections of the salary schedule before voting on the whole package. Those sections were:
1)     Increases based on job performance evaluations
2)     Increases based on longevity
3)     Salary adjustments for swimming pool employees
4)     Salary adjustments for new position at the airport
5)     Salary adjustments for public works department due to reorganization
6)     Salary adjustments for all other employees with adjustments
7)     Salary adjustments based on the comparability study
 
The council did pass sections 1 and 3-6 with a vote of 4-1 with Grant the “no” vote on each one. In section 2, the vote was 3-1 with Barth abstaining and Grant voting no. The seventh section is one in which the city will work up a comparability policy to be presented to the council at a later date. More information will also be presented at the council’s November 4th meeting regarding the changes taking place at the airport. City manager Anderson stated that he is currently in negotiations with Mark Hutton as the city aims to manage and operate the airport’s facilities itself (hence the new position, which will be filled by parks superintendent Scott Schremmer, who will continue in parks and at the airport). The city plans to retain Hutton to serve solely in the FBO capacity.
 
In other news, Jan Storjohann and Emily Klein presented the city with a framed print of Sheila Orr’s painting, entitled, “The End of the Drive” with the request that it be hung prominently either in the hallway of City Hall or right inside the glass doors. Orr had created the painting in connection with the city’s 125th celebration last year.
 
Certified public accountant George Klein informed the board that he will no longer be providing auditing services for governmental agencies. “He did agree, however, to help with the transition to a new company since he has been auditing the city for many years. Fred A. Lockwood and Co., otherwise known as FALCO, will resume auditing services for the city for the fiscal years ending in 2013, 2014, and 2015, with an additional one-year renewal option.
 
City zoning and building official Janet Johnson informed the council of all property maintenance code violations received since the adoption of the code in September 2009. Johnson says the city has received 33 complaints to date. Of those complaints, 23 have been abated with four houses demolished and 20 trailers either demolished or moved. Of the 10 remaining complaints, three trailers are schedules to be either demolished or removed and nine properties are schedules to be repaired.
 
(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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