Archive for Monday, July 16, 2012

Basehor City Council gives employees pay bump

Basehor City Hall is at 2620 N. 155th St.

Basehor City Hall is at 2620 N. 155th St.

July 16, 2012, 10:52 p.m.

Updated: July 17, 2012, 1:11 p.m.

The Basehor City Council sent a message to the city’s police officers Monday night: Stay here.

The council approved more than $100,000 worth of pay increases for city employees, with the bulk going to police. Most of the officers will receive increases of about 10 percent and about $3,000 per year.

Also approved was a new pay scale that raises possible wage ceilings for the city’s upper-level employees by as much as 40 percent. But in 2013, it’s the city’s rank-and-file who will get the biggest bump.

The council approved the 2013 wages and the new pay scale with a 4-0 vote. Member Vernon J. Fields was absent.

Interim city administrator and police chief Lloyd Martley has said several times in the past that the city has had a difficult time holding onto its police officers, and he mentioned the problem again Monday.

“We lose good quality employees to other cities around us,” Martley said.

All city employees will receive a wage increase of at least 2 percent under the plan. The additional wage increases for police and other lower- and midlevel employees were based on a study of pay in other area cities by Martley along with council members Brian Healy and Fields.

A good deal of work had gone into formulating the plan, Healy said.

“You have to look at who is out there and what they’re doing to know what your baseline is,” Healy said.

Before the council voted on the plan, Healy directed some comments toward recalled former council member Iris Dysart, who attacked the salary increases during the meeting’s public-comment period earlier.

Dysart said she’d heard over and over since her 2003 election to the council that employees needed to be paid more. But she said Basehor shouldn’t try to compete with area cities with bigger tax bases and deeper pockets.

“This is the same song that I’ve heard for nine years,” Dysart said.

Healy criticized Dysart for saying that some employees were in line for pay increases of as much as 40 or 50 percent — a far higher amount than any employee will receive in 2013. He implored her to apologize to the council for citing inaccurate figures.

“We would never let that happen,” Healy said. “And I don’t think you would have let it happen.”

The highest single pay increase for any employee in 2013 will be about 16 percent. The figures Dysart cited also appeared in a letter published in the Sentinel on June 7 from another former council member, Jim Washington. Those percentages referred to an earlier proposed pay scale, not to any proposed raises for 2013.

It is true, though, that the new pay scale approved Monday night increases the possible wage ceilings for some top positions, such as the city superintendent and police chief, by as much as about 40 percent or around $28,000 per year.

Those employees are far from reaching those ceilings, however. And Healy said employees would move up the new scale only through performance-based raises, which is a change for the city.

“If somebody doesn’t deserve a raise because their performance doesn’t merit it, then they don’t get it,” Healy said.

Martley said no employees would receive performance-based raises until at least 2014, and all raises will require City Council approval.

The wage increases for 2013 were included in a draft of the city’s 2013 budget presented to the council Monday. The budget would lower the city’s mill levy by a fraction of a mill from its 2012 level, to about 29.3 mills.

The council will hold a public hearing and likely approve the budget before its Aug. 6 work session. If any objections are raised during the public hearing, the council could delay the approval until a week later, Martley said Monday.

Also during Monday’s meeting, the council:

• Approved, 4-0, a contract with Canyon Stone Inc. of Olathe for about $8,000 to restore the stone structure at the center of the roundabout at 155th Street and Pinehurst Drive.

• Agreed, 4-0, to waive a $150 fee for a short-term conditional-use permit for a circus sponsored by the Basehor Chamber of Commerce, scheduled for Aug. 27.

• As part of the consent agenda, approved, 4-0, two agreements with the Kansas Department of Transportation regarding construction projects on Wolf Creek Parkway and 155th and 158th streets; the rezoning of 2804 N. 155th St. from a neighborhood business district to a single-family residential district; and an agreement with the Electronic Transaction Systems Corporation to provide online utility billing.

• Entered into three periods of executive session. One session also included Martley and City Attorney Shannon Marcano and lasted 20 minutes; the other two included Martley, Marcano and Mike Seck, an attorney representing the city's liability insurance provider, and lasted 15 minutes and 25 minutes.

Comments

JimWashington 2 years, 5 months ago

Mr. Healy and his fellow governing body members have the best intentions but they will not be in office forever. By putting in a system which has the potential to be abused, they have guaranteed that at some point it will be abused. That's just a political and historical fact of life.

Does any thinking person believe that the cities around the country filing bankruptcy got that way overnight? No, every one of them started with the best intentions. Can Basehor KS become Bell CA? Maybe not next year or the year after but, in time, yes it can, unless the people of this city have the intelligence, involvement, and comittment to continually demand accountability of the governing body and the staff.

There were over 900 people who voted in the recall election. By that vote you obligated yourself to be informed and remain involved. This particularly applies to the more than 300 voters who had not previously voted in a city election. Where are you now?

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Thinkaboutit 2 years, 5 months ago

I am one of those voters who first voted for the recall. I also support the raises for the city employees.They deserve to be taken care of for the many years they have taken care of us. I sleep very well with my family feeling safe at night knowing that our officers sre out protecting my family instead of tucking their own children into bed.Thank You ALL city employees. Congratulations on your raises! Hope it goes to good use.

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johninbasehor 2 years, 5 months ago

Thank you Elaine for your comment. Say hello to Becky.

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becky 2 years, 5 months ago

She must be a good person.

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politico_guardian 2 years, 5 months ago

Fools Fools Fools

Here we lack the common services in our city while the employees are getting fatter. Here we have discussions where the county is looking at cutting an emergency vehicle once again while we spend it like candy. ¿Why will we not take this $100k and put it towards emergency? ¿Does anyone on city council want to get elected next year? Healy has no clue, "We would never let that happen". Dude you have NO clue. The mayor can move someone on the pay plan without council approval. Read the bylaws and ordinance. It is plain and clear. You approved for up to 40% raise. mayor call tell you to climb a rope. ¿Are you that inexperienced that you did not confirm this? Bahahaha You are being schooled. You best authenticate before you open your mouth. That woman who stood up knew what she was talking about. You sit are the one who needs to apologize.

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Thinkaboutit 2 years, 5 months ago

Spend it on emergency you say? Who the hell do you think shows up at your house when you have an emergency?! It's not Jim, Iris, or Dennis! It's our officers that we just gave a raise! If you don't pay them a respectable wage..... THEY LEAVE! Then we have to spend time and money to hire replacements, educate new officers at a several week long academy approximately 3 hours away (all while being paid by us) and, train in the city while riding with another officer (again being paid by us). That is a lot of time and money to devote to a person, when as soon as they are finished with the academy that we paid them through, they are highly covitted by several agencies across the state! Then we start all over again when they leave for better pay! So why not just give our current already trained and certified officers a raise? If you don't like it, next time you have an emergency, call Jim or Iris! See how fast they get there!

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LightTheDarkCorners 2 years, 5 months ago

When seconds count, the police are only minutes away!

Or in the case of EMTs half an hour plus.

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MzR 2 years, 5 months ago

In spite of town feedback to the contrary on the amount and method of those "upper-level" pay raises, but got approved anyway. Nothing wrong with a pay raise for the employees IF you can afford it, but that 40% hike for the "upper-level," AND the process for getting it, is pure bunk! And THAT'S the point of discussion here and elsewhere, NOT about the stupid attacks on former politicians, or the stupid back-handed comments about us residents being against a pay raise for the "lower-level" employees! "Missing the point" on purpose is a tactic to keep attacking until people get disgusted and go away, and then you get your own way like a 2-year old's temper tantrum, right?

As per recent news, Hutchison's police chief, in a city of about 42,000 population, has 30+ years experience as a full-time officer, even has experience in a large city, and he doesn't get anywhere near what our town's almost 6,000 police chief is going to be getting! Guess that was missed during the council's research of other cities mentioned above.

How many years of full-time police experience and training do you have, Mr. Martley, and did you ever get any experience in a larger city?? And since when does a city continue to allow the police chief to "supervise" himself by also serving as the city administrator--oh, forgot, city superintendent is the new "title" now. What experience do you have, Mr. Martley, to even be a city administrator/superintendent?? IF a city doubles up on employees doing more than one job, it's USUALLY to save money, not spend more with double salaries that gets jacked up higher and higher than the surrounding larger cities!! So does this 40% hike apply to BOTH "upper-level" jobs that you've had since almost a year ago, and when it happens, the town can be deceived into thinking it's for "the other" job until you've got the full 80% for both jobs?? Get real.

And furthermore, getting sick and tired of posts on these forums attacking people who speak out, just because their opinions disagree with the "annointed" opinions! We teach kids at public schools to learn the art of "conflict resolution," why can't you attacking nay-sayers take a few lessons over at the school on how to talk to people when there's a difference of opinion!!??

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LightTheDarkCorners 2 years, 5 months ago

Bravo!

Administrator and Superintendent are two different positions. Superintendent runs WWTF and Streets - and considering the educational and professional qualifications of the current holder of that position - the wage potential of that job is stratospheric.

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ProudOfOurCity 2 years, 5 months ago

Well here we go again! The Washington's and Mertz's are speaking out again.

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MzR 2 years, 5 months ago

Stand corrected on "superintendent"...used in same sentence with police chief was mis-read, "my bad," thank you. Point still stands if "interim city administrator" is included in the 40% "upper-level" pay bump. Gives new perspective on "double dipping" when getting 40% raise for each.

Ewwwwwwww, "Well here we go again!..." We moved here 21 months ago, never met who you keep attacking. Gets old and sure makes you look like a *

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becky 2 years, 5 months ago

to the citzens of basehor Mr. Healy saided in the paper to take small bites of the apple. I think the council members ate the whole apple. miles is always wanting to give more and more to the employees and the staff. Ever sense the not elected council members have come on board for the Mayor . The vote is always 5 to zero . Marley saided some citys was getting 4 to 8 percent increase in raises. Let' marley tell us where these city are , are they the same size as ours , or have the little bussiness district , that we have . I moved here 45 years ago, I wanted a small town to live in . You the council and the staff at city Hall wants to live big , you get more crime, break - ins I want the small town , we had. i see that Miles said last year that the lower employees on the pole wasn't making enough money, But what happened Guess WHAT who's getting the big bucks, the upper crust. You citzens of basehor need to come to the council meetings. See what is going on in Basehor, it is our town, the new council members need to look at what the citzens want , Not what the Mayor or the staff wants. thank for your time

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LightTheDarkCorners 2 years, 5 months ago

See today's story on real estate values. Leavenworth County average sale price down 2.3% this year. Hmmn, guess that means lower appraisals and lower tax receipts. Spend spend spend, boys.

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johninbasehor 2 years, 4 months ago

Isn't it strange that all the negative comments on this board all come from only three IP addresses? The conclusion is that about three households have multiple computers in their houses and the same people post under different names to mislead us into thinking many are posting, that is except Becky. Everyone recognizes when she posts.

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