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Pay raises for city employees, another example of executive excellence.

by fredo
on 3/5/2009 @ 8:11am
The city of Tacoma is afraid that city employees might quit their jobs. So many of them are getting a big raise.

Nobodys going to quit a city job with full benefits in today's economy. This is just a demonstration of how out of touch council is with current events.

by izenmania on 3/5/2009 @ 9:05am
Some details on the process.

Some people are getting raises of various sizes. Some people are getting firmly locked into their current level and essentially being told "now it's official and on paper: you will never get another raise as long as you work here" (from what I understand).

The pay changes are based on a pretty comprehensive study of, I believe, similar municipalities and their pay structures. Because no, people won't just quit their day job because of money complaints, but they will look seriously at other employers which will pay them more to do the same job.

I don't know enough at this point to tell you whether I agree with the decision or not, but I can tell you that it is not just arbitrary broad-stroke raises.

by Crenshaw Sepulveda on 3/5/2009 @ 9:42am
fredo is right, you'd be nuts to quit a good job with the city with full benefits and all. I'm fairly certain the rank and file employees will not be getting any raises at all. The executives that deny them the raises will be getting the raises. If a belt needs tightening, the executives should be the first to do so and set the example. I'm not saying our fine non-executive employees are overpaid and underworking. I'm saying that this economy is making everyone revise their expectations and forcing us all to work together to see our way out of this. The executives should be setting the example, the gravy train has left the station.

by fredo on 3/5/2009 @ 9:36pm
Joe @ Thanks for the link. I've read the process details. The compensation philosophy of the city of Tacoma is whack. There's an unsupported assumption that city employees will leave city employment without increased compensation. All one has to do is open any news periodical in print and read it to conclude that people will not quit a government job. There's no less relevant metric than what some other city was paying their employees a few years ago. Taxpayers want their taxes thrown at real problems such as potholes, not non existent problems.

by ensie on 3/6/2009 @ 11:32am
When was the last pay raise for city employees?

by jenyum on 3/6/2009 @ 11:46am
I don't begrudge the people who make under 100k their pay raise, but I do think it would have been advisable to hold off on the upper management people.

by Erik on 3/6/2009 @ 12:16pm
What was missing completely in the Tribune op ed is a substantive market analysis for the City Managers pay.

Doctors who are professors at UW Seattle make more than other professors based on marker demand. Listing a few other city manager salaries around the country sure would have helped to see if the pay was too little or too much.

by tacoma1 on 3/6/2009 @ 12:57pm
I read the TNT article also, found the information contained within the piece extremely uninformative. Without being provided the comparative salary's, it's impossible to know how much is too much.

by jenyum on 3/6/2009 @ 1:27pm
@Erik & @tacoma1

True. Would be more productive to have that information.

by tacoma1 on 3/6/2009 @ 4:30pm
Eric Anderson weighed in, and said no thanks to the raise. Now is not the time. Seems like the honorable thing to do.

by Erik on 3/6/2009 @ 5:10pm
Pretty impressive that he passed it up. After he offered to give up the raise and income taxes, he might as well have foregone the entire raise.

Tacoma is lucky to have our city Manager to try to pull Tacoma into the 21st century.

The group who sought to turn the city manager form of government into a strong mayor system even evaporated.

I just hope he doesn't leave,

by izenmania on 3/6/2009 @ 5:16pm
Tacoma is lucky to have our city Manager to try to pull Tacoma into the 21st century.

He is also a city manager who says that we have enough reserves to get through the next two years with virtually zero budget cuts. No word yet on what he plans to do if the recession is still on in two years and the city's reserves are completely depleted.

by fredo on 3/6/2009 @ 10:59pm
The city's reserves are there to maintain CORE services should the economy collapse. Spending them to address non existent problems is worse than foolish.