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Town staff pay increases allocated

Farragut’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved retroactive pay for salary capped employees from fiscal year 2009 and a lump sum bonus for capped employees in FY 2010 at its meeting Thursday, July 23.

The capped employees are receiving the highest amount possible in their approved salary ranges. There were four capped employees in FY 2009; six in FY 2010.

“We have a number of employees capping themselves. … This would basically be what they would have received had they not been capped,” Interim Town Administrator Gary Palmer said.

The bonus and retroactive pay are based on merit increases the capped employees would have received: 2.5 percent this fiscal year and 4 percent last year.

The total amount of the retroactive pay and the bonuses is less than $10,000.

“Why are we paying higher than the salary cap at a time of economic contraction, and how did we arrive at the salary cap?” Alderman Bob Markli asked.

Human Resources Manager Janet Curry said the current salary caps were based on a 2007 salary survey.

Palmer told the Board a “comprehensive study of the organization and the salary ranges” was planned for the near future, “But it’s going to take some time to do that.”

“Because of all the changes that have happened over the last six to nine months, we’ve kind of dragged our feet on this issue.

“We anticipate this next organizational study taking at least a year. That’s a long time for people to wait,” he added.

Palmer added many of the capped employees had reached their maximum pay amount by receiving merit increases.

Other employees were capped simply because they had been employed by the Town for so long, Curry said.

“The flip side of this is that you’re actually penalizing people for no fault of their own, just for being capped … for doing good work,” Alderman Jeff Elliott said.

The Board unanimously approved both the retroactive pay and the lump-sum bonuses.


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