Council discusses upping max pay rates

By William Duffield Staff writer

March 1, 2014

XENIA — The introduction of a resolution to amend the Pay Grade Wage Schedule to increase the maximum pay rate became a spark for controversy and contention between members of the Xenia City Council Thursday night.

Councilman John Caupp commented that he didn’t feel the city needed to up the top of the pay scale because the pay rate offered to employees now was more than fair. To which, Councilman Dale Louderback countered that the reason the city doesn’t have a high turnover in employees is because it has always offered good pay.

Louderback added that the employees need to have a chance for a salary increase, too.

“They need a day’s wages for a day’s work,” he said.

The legislation would bump the top of the pay scale up by two percent.

“I’m not sure that is needed when we can have a secretary stay on to make a career with the city — which I’m not saying is bad — and make something like $45,000 a year,” Caupp said. “That’s already pretty good pay for a secretary.”

Caupp said an employee in the private sector wouldn’t be able to draw that type of salary.

“And that’s a private employer,” Caupp said. “We’re public. I’m thinking about taking care of our tax payers.”

“You’re right,” Louderback responded. “We are public and I’m thinking about our tax payers and our employees.”

Council seemed split over if the resolution should pass.

The council passed an emergency ordinance to appropriate funds for the engineering design for improvements to the intersection of West Main Street and Hospitality Drive.

The intersection is the most direct way from West Main to Wal-Mart and Lowes. At the time of the design, however, the intersection was set up as a left turn only from West Main to Hospitality and a right turn only from Hospitality to West Main.

New plans are to redesign that intersection so drivers and turn either direction from Hospitality to West Main, and turn into Hospitality from either direction of West Main.

The design, council determined, would make more sense with a stop light at that intersection and the U. S. 35 bypass off ramp would be changed to a stop sign.

“It may actually slow down traffic and make the intersection at Progress safer,” Mayor Marsha Bayless said.

William Duffield can be reached at 937-372-4444 ext. 133 or on Twitter @WilliamDuffield.