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City employees to see 2 percent raise in '19

COUNCIL: City Council members Doug Adams and Marc Shelley review proposed salaries for city employes in 2019.

by ANDREW CHRISTMAN - achristman@wabashplaindealer.com

The Wabash City Council took the first step for approving 2 percent raises for city employees in 2019.

The council on Monday approved the first reading of the City’s 2019 salary ordinance. Mayor Scott Long said the raises are regular and have been continuing annually for the past three years.

Long’s salary will also be increasing by 2 percent, which Clerk-Treasurer Wendy Frazier said came about after the council and mayor were all on the same page.

While Long declined to take a raise after he was elected, some members of the City Council objected to the idea as they believed temporarily freezing the mayor’s salary would make it harder for the City to budget for future pay increases.

“The mayor’s salary should increase,” Frazier said, noting that annual raises help keep the mayor’s pay competitive.

Changes to this year’s salary ordinance include a provision to pay a first class fireman, school resource officer, EMS director and dispatcher from the Public Safety Local Option Income Tax (LOIT) Fund. Long added there are several title changes as well.

The ordinance was approved 6-0 on first reading, with member Bob Greene absent.

In other business, the council approved its 2019 budget, which will now head to the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance for final consideration.

Long said the biggest change to the budget will be moving $500,000 from the City’s rainy day and County Economic Development Income Tax (CEDIT) funds to pay for a cleanup at the old GDX site, slated to become a housing development.