FAIRLAWN: City workers in Fairlawn should look for a 2.25 percent pay hike in their paychecks starting Jan. 1.
Council is expected to approve the city’s temporary operating budget for 2013 tonight as well as pay raises for all city employees.
The raises include employees in labor unions as well as the nonbargaining employees. There are 81 full-time employees.
“Citywide all employees will get a raise,” said Mayor Bill Roth. “In fairness, we try to treat the bargaining and nonbargaining employees the same. I think 2.25 percent is very realistic and very fair. Two years ago there was no wage increase.”
There were no wage increases in 2010 or 2011. Last year the mayor and his department heads took voluntary furlough days to save the city money.
The general fund, which is the city’s operating budget, is estimated at $11.76 million — a 1 percent increase over this year’s budget. The city’s main source of revenue is its income tax.
The mayor said the projected budget includes additional employees to fill vacancies in several departments to get those areas back to full-capacity staffing levels. It also includes a 10 percent increase in health-care costs, but in reality there will only be a 2 percent increase, so the savings there will cover the pay raises.
The temporary budget did not factor in the wage hikes since negotiations were still going on, but will be factored into the permanent budget.
“We take one year at a time. We are very conservative about this,” said Roth. “We pass a temporary budget by the end of the year and then we pass the final budget by March 31.”
City administrators say four vacancies are expected to be filled next year — a police officer, firefighter, dispatcher and an employee in the Service Department.
The city finished up negotiations with all the full-time and part-time union employee bargaining units over the past month. There are 52 employees represented in the five unions.
All five union contracts for full-time employees have three-year deals that expire at the end of next year. The contracts included wage reopeners for 2012 and 2013.
Marilyn Miller can be reached at 330-996-3098 or firstname.lastname@example.org.