Vandalia’s highest paid employees: Payroll Project

Vandalia city council’s recent decision to part ways with City Manager Dan Wendt follows Wendt being the city’s highest paid employee in 2023, according to the Dayton Daily News Payroll Project.

But the $182,100 Wendt was paid in 2023 is far less than he is being paid to leave, and less than the contract rate for his temporary replacement.

City council voted earlier this month to pay Wendt over $277,000 in severance pay in exchange for Wendt resigning. The city then agreed to hire former Kettering City Manager Mark Schweiterman as temporary city manager through a contract with the Shared Resource Center for $16,000 a month.

That contract rate would come out to $192,000 a year. As Kettering city manager, Schweiterman was paid $222,404 in 2022 before retiring at the end of that year, according to a previous Payroll Project story.

Wendt was one of 35 Vandalia city employees paid over $100,000 in 2023, according to city payroll data. Most were in the police department. Police officers can boost their base pay by tens of thousands of dollars with overtime — and in Vandalia they can get a couple more thousand by working the air show.

Go here for a searchable database of public employee pay for local governments, including Vandalia

The employer for government agencies is the voting and taxpaying public. As with any other employer, the public has not just a right but a responsibility to know how much its employees are paid in the interest of good stewardship.

Vandalia’s highest-paid employees in 2023 were:

1. Dan Wendt, city manager: $182,100

2. Kurt Althouse, police chief: $155,395

3. Chad Follick, fire chief: $151,577

4. Garry Lawson, police sergeant $146,871

5. Todd Flynn, police sergeant: $144,655

6. Douglas Nagel, police sergeant: $142,225

7. Robert Cron, assistant city manager: $140,106

8. Thomas Vallery, police sergeant: $139,139

9. Amber Holloway, assistant city manager: $134,505

10. Benjamin Walker, police sergeant: $131,936

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