Sunday, June 16, 2019 Elyria 67°

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Elyria considers raises for non-union employees


ELYRIA — Certain city workers may be looking at their first pay raises in two years if some members of City Council have their way.

Elyria City Council’s Finance Committee discussed so-called “Chapter 165” employees — a classification dealing with non-union workers including many City Hall employees — who have not had pay raises since at least 2016, officials said Wednesday.

Councilman Vic Stewart, D-at large and the committee chairman, said there has been “some discussion in regard to this, that Chapter 165 (employee pay has not) been up to speed with” that of those city employees represented by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union.

Wednesday’s discussion came before the city’s 2019 budget was finalized or a $41,000 salary study by Gallagher Benefits Services was completed. The study is focuses on more than two dozen jobs, including those of safety service director, police chief, fire chief, city engineer, assistant city engineer and clerk of council.

Council has oversight in changing Chapter 165 of the city’s codified ordinances, and Stewart said he is focused on compensating employees who have “taken furloughs; they’ve taken hits in those difficult times.”

“It’s about being fair to them,” he said. Council President Mike Lotko and Councilman Jack Baird, R-at large, agreed.

Chapter 165 employees “haven’t gotten a raise for a couple years, and we owe them,” Lotko said. “It’s time we do it ... it’s a no-brainer.”

“Fair is fair,” Baird said. “We need to get this up-to-date. I hope the salary study will deal with that.”

Chapter 165 employees got a 2 percent bump in pay in December 2016, according to city officials. They went without a raise for three years prior to that, according to previous Chronicle-Telegram articles.

City human resources director Claudia Dillinger told the committee that the Gallagher Benefits’ salary study should be completed within the next three weeks.

The committee will take up the matter again at 6:30 p.m. Monday when it meets prior to council’s regular 7 p.m. meeting.

“I feel very strongly these individuals deserve a raise,” Stewart said, though he said he required more information that Finance Director Ted Pileski promised to provide by Monday’s meeting.

The committee also voted unanimously to send the 2019 Community Development Block Grant Action Plan to council for a final vote Monday. Council’s Community Development Committee signed off on the plan at its meeting Monday.

“If Community Development supported it, I’m all for it,” Lotko said.

Contact Dave O’Brien at (440) 329-7129 or do’ Follow him at @daveobrienCT on Twitter.

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