Addressing Real Issues with Real Facts

The Truth About Employee Compensation

in City Manager/Employee Compensation/Finances by

It is unclear what the underlying motivation would be for anyone to purposely misconstrue facts about something as important as employee compensation, yet that is exactly what is happening via social media posts, emails and even by some candidates during their door-to-door campaigning. With these distortions, a lot is needed to correct the untruths and give Addison residents the actual facts. 

These compensation facts were presented at Tuesday night’s Council meeting on March 22, 2016 by Director of Human Resource Passion Hayes. Below are the actual facts, or you can see the entire discussion for yourself via this link.

Fact: The Town’s compensation philosophy is very clear

  • To encourage excellence in service by tying salary increases to job performance rather than tenure;
  • to reward employees for their efforts and job performance;
  • and to remain competitive with other metroplex cities in regards to the Town’s compensation program.

Fact: A Market Study confirmed that Sworn Public Safety positions are currently more than 5% behind market

In addition, 14 Civilian positions out of 91 are behind market.

Fact: The Town does not have a large attrition rate due to salaries

Contrary to claims that the Town has a large attrition rate because of salaries, Ms. Hayes told Council members that a number of departures were due to retirement and very few, about five or less, left for larger salaries.

Fact: It is the City Manager’s responsibility, not the Mayor or Council, to determine/recommend the compensation budget

It is also the City Manager, not the Mayor or Council, who decides how compensation funds approved by the Council are distributed.

Fact: In Fiscal Year 2013, the City Manager requested $750,000 for employee compensation

The Council increased the amount and approved $879,486.38. Instead of distributing these funds according to individual needs, the City Manager made an across-the-board 2% distribution for all employees.

Fact: In Fiscal Year 2014, the Council once again approved $815,162.92 as requested by the City Manager

The distribution of those funds was the sole decision of the City Manager.

Fact: In Fiscal Year 2015, the Council approved $1,054,675.51

The distribution was determined by the City Manager.

Fact: The approved Fiscal Year 2016 compensation budget of $518,130 was increased to $581,377.00

By the Council approving this additional amount and going above the requested amount, the tax rate needed to be slightly increased. This caused a tax rate above the rollback but the Council took this political risk, making a commitment to the employees to do the right thing because without additional funds the Town would not have been able to adequately take care of its employees and bring their salaries up to market.

Fact: The Town’s new City Manager did what any new manager would do

When the Town’s new City Manager, Wesley Pierson, came on board in December 1, 2015, he said he knew that compensation was a priority and did what any new manager would do.

“Thirty days into my employment I asked for time to do due diligence,” he said. This delayed the distribution, thus he recommended that the decision to delay should be made up for by making the increase retroactive to January 1, 2016. The Council concurred.

Fact: Over this period the Council approved the largest compensation increases in the history of Addison

Bottom line Facts: Addison’s compensation is totally caught up to market

The approved and implemented aggregate increases for Fiscal Years 2013-2016 now reflects an average compensation increase of:

Police Officers26.1%
All other employees18.19%

One more fact: The accusation that the “Council” has overspent the budget three years in a row is deceitful and dishonest. First of all, the Council doesn’t do the spending. More importantly, by law, a Town cannot spend more than budgeted without Council approval.

Facts do matter!

Photo of worn wallet by Henry Bloomfield via Flickr

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