City of Kettering sign
Photo: Staff Writer
Photo: Staff Writer

Kettering moves to give raises to hundreds of city workers

MORE: Kettering police one step closer to reaching contract deal with city

The 2018 city budget approved last December includes total personnel costs of $51 million. That’s two-thirds of the city’s operating budget. The $51 million included a 2 percent across-the-board pay increase. But the city has recently reached tentative union contracts that call for 2.5 percent increases and it will match those raises for non-union workers as well.

“This is what we traditionally end up doing every three years or so once we finish with the union negotiations for non-union employees,” Mayor Don Patterson said.

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No final total of what the proposed retroactive raises will cost the city were released.

According the city’s human resource department, the city employs about 400 regular full-time employees, 100 regular part-time employees, 30 part-time firefighters and more than 500 seasonal employees. The raises are for the full- and part-time workers.

The city of Kettering paid more than 120 employees more than $100,000 in 2017 according to the Dayton Daily News Investigates Payroll Project searchable database of public employees.

City Manager Mark Schwieterman, the highest paid city employee at $196,443, said the vote will authorize the tentative agreement that the city will enter into with the Kettering Police Supervisors’ Association — the sergeants and lieutenants in the police department.

MORE: Kettering police promote 2 to sergeant, one to lieutenant

“There have been ongoing collective bargaining discussions with all of our collective bargaining units,” Schwieterman said. “The police supervisors have agreed to a very similar package to the other units. The package would be a 2.5 percent increase each year for three years.”

The Kettering Professional firefighters IAFF Local 2150 has been engaged in collective bargaining negotiations regarding the captains unit since November 2017, and mediation sessions were held in January and February of this year with the State Employment Relations Board..

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“We have been in discussions with the firefighters’ collective bargaining unit and through those discussions we have reached a tentative agreement,” Schwieterman said.

The city also will move forward on combining the fire captains and the firefighters into one unit. The firefighters also have agreed to a three-year contract with 2.5 percent raises per year, Schwieterman said.

The next step will be to get SERB approval for the process of putting those two units into one, he said.

“Once that is done, we have a plan in place to handle the next three years of the two contracts and then ultimately we will end up at the next negotiations with these two groups,” Schwieterman said, adding that it will be easier to negotiate with both groups as they merge into one unit. “We will be in negotiations with one group for a contract moving forward at the end of the three-year period.”

MORE: Kettering and fire union agree on tentative 3 year deal

Council members also moved forward on the first reading of an ordinance to adjust wages for non-union employees to match raises for union workers.

The city wants to change the pay scales from what was a 2 percent increase for 2018 to a 2.5 percent raise for non-union employees.

“I want to reiterate that this is the 2018 personnel ordinance in its first reading,” Schwieterman advised council members. “At your meeting on Dec. 4, we will bring forth the 2019 personnel ordinance in first reading.”

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