Portage officials receiving salary bumps for new year

2013-12-29T17:15:00Z 2013-12-29T23:06:07Z Portage officials receiving salary bumps for new yearJoyce Russell joyce.russell@nwi.com, (219) 762-1397, ext. 2222 nwitimes.com

PORTAGE | Most city employees will see a bump up in their paychecks in 2014.

The City Council recently approved a new salary ordinance that will give the average employee a 3 percent pay increase, but some administrators will get as much as an 11 percent boost.

Clerk-treasurer Chris Stidham said the salary ordinance was overhauled to reflect a change in philosophy.

Previously, pay rate changes were granted one at a time and if a department head wanted to give an employee a raise, they'd have to come to the City Council to seek an amendment to the ordinance to change the salary.

The new ordinance, he said, gives salary ranges instead of specific salaries for a position, providing more flexibility. It also, said Stidham, reconfigures employee groups by skill levels.

For example, clerks, no matter what department they are working for, are divided by a skill set and are paid appropriately by that skill set.

The discrepancy in the percentage increases for 2014 for employees is because they already could have been at the top of the scale or significantly below, explained Stidham.

Some nonelected officials will see slight increases, while others will see double-digit percentage increases.

According to the new salary ordinance, police administrative salaries receive the greatest increase with the chief's salary rising 11.39 percent from $60,956 to $67,900 a year; assistant chief's salary, rising 11.53 percent from $56,039 to $62,500; and raises for police major by 6.23 percent and captain's salaries up 5.36 percent.

The fire chief will receive a 9.34 percent pay increase from $64,021 to $70,000 per year with assistant chiefs receiving a 3.47 percent increase and division chiefs a 3.93 percent increase.

Street department administrators will receive 2 percent increases; park superintendent, a 3 percent increase, and director of public works, a 2 percent increase.

Those increases are on top of elected official pay increases also approved by the City Council this month.

Mayor James Snyder's overall salary will increase from $67,976 to $75,966. While Snyder was granted a 5 percent pay increase by the City Council, he also receives a portion of his pay from the Utility Services Board, which he chairs. His salary from that department will jump 31.95 percent from $17,056 to $22,500. His overall salary will increase 11.75 percent for 2014.

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About Portage

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