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112 city employees to take unpaid furloughs

By Staff | Oct 19, 2010

Over 100 non-bargaining city employees must take unpaid furloughs for FY 2011.
City Council approved ordinance 78-10 on Monday, which mandates that employees who make between $50,000 – $74,999 to take 16 hours of unpaid time off, and employees who make more than $75,000 to take 32 hours in unpaid time off.
A total of 112 employees are affected by the decision.
Councilmember Bill Deile said previously the furloughs were a holdover from previous budgeting efforts of then City Manager Carl Schwing, and that the furloughs would create a sense of parity between bargaining and non-bargaining employees.
Union employees have also faced furloughs in recent years.
According to city budget administrator Sheena Milken, 27 non-bargaining city employees make $50,000; 44 non-bargaining employees make $50,000 to $74,999; and 41 non-bargaining employees make $75,000 and greater.
Milken said the furloughs equate to an estimated savings of $112,100.63 in salary and benefits.
Councilmember Kevin McGrail said he is worried that the furloughs would leave “key staff” members unavailable in times of need.
“It’s important we have advance notice so we can get in touch with someone if when we need them,” McGrail said.
City Manager Gary King said that all furloughs will be strategically placed and not effect services or be unreachable.
Councilmember Chris Chulakes-Leetz said he appreciates that none of the affected employees spoke out against the ordinance during Monday’s public hearing.
“They’re being part of the solution in these difficult financial times,” he said. “My hat is off to them.”