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May 11

City Manager's Message 5-11-17: FY 18 Budget Adoption

Posted on May 11, 2017 at 11:44 AM by Mary Bunting

Yesterday City Council approved the FY18 City budget. All of the compensation measures in my recommended budget were approved. In summary:

  •  Full-time employees will receive a 2% general wage increase reflected in the ?July 7th paycheck. Full-time employees hired on or before March 31, 2017 are eligible to receive the increase.
  • There is a slight increase in health insurance premiums, but modest enough to ensure that all full-time employees see an increase in their take home pay.  The City will continue to pay 100% of the life insurance premiums. 
  • The quarterly bonus personal days will continue.
  • The citizen satisfaction achievement award will be paid in the ?December 8th paycheck. The base amount of the award is $250 for full-time employees and $125 for part-time/WAE employees who average 20 hours per week for the period of ?July 1, 2016-June 30, 2017. The actual award amount will be based of the citizen satisfaction survey.  The parameters of this award require that employees hired on or before December 31, 2016 and in a pay status ?on December 1, 2017to be eligible.
  • The promotional policy will change to allow for a 10% raise (12% if going from non-exempt to exempt) aligning this practice more closely with our external hiring practices.

Aside from employee compensation, the FY18 budget also provides funding for various public safety initiatives including an additional 12 police officers, investing in police equipment, expanding youth violence prevention efforts, enhancing public safety street lighting, and increasing funds above the funding formula for the schools to support operational efforts, one-time academy funding and raises for school personnel. 

Mayor Tuck acknowledged last night that this budget was challenging and thanked the staff for their efforts. I would like to thank the Budget Review Committee and the Budget staff for their hard work in helping to prepare this budget in what was an unexpectedly challenging year not only for Hampton but also for the entire region. Most localities are still recovering from the economic slowdown that impacted the country. Hampton Roads has lagged behind the recovery of other metropolitan areas. As a result, most localities did have to raises taxes and/or fees this year. In our case, we had only minor increases in the Solid Waste user fee, a change to the RV personal property tax rate from effectively zero to the prevailing regional practice and changes in two practices (the definition of extended stays in the lodging industry which gave us more lodging tax revenue and a shift in the EMS co-pay policy). While no one ever wants to raise fees or taxes, the Council had little challenge supporting those changes in large part due to their full support our great workforce and the services you collectively provide. On behalf of a grateful Council, community and executive staff, I once again thank you for you for all you do on behalf of the citizens and continuing to choose Hampton as your employer.

Mary


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