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Council adopts part-time wage freeze for 2010

The Wadena City Council voted to freeze all part-time wages for 2010 with minor exceptions for wording changes and the fire department's relief association.

The council declined requested wage increases for part-time public works assistant Mike Peters from $9.86 an hour to $10.15 an hour.

Public Works Director Ron Bucholz requested the raise saying Peters does the work of a full-time position and has been a good employee for the city.

Councilman Toby Pierce said he appreciated Bucholz thinking Peters was a good employee, but a raise would not be fair to other employees whose wages are frozen. The city is trying to hold down costs, he said.

The city also turned town requested wage increases in the fire department, while leaving alone the relief association's proposed wage changes.

The city can't decide the relief association's pay scale, City Administrator Brad Swenson said. If the association wants to give the treasurer a raise from $381 a year to $393 or the secretary a raise from $138 a year to $142, they can do that.

Council members approved a wording change to the part-time police secretary and officers wage scale from the bottom step of the full-time position's wage to a flat rate. The part-time police secretary's wage was set at $13.72 per hour, which is the same as the pay in 2007. The part-time officers' wage was set at $17.35 an hour, which is the same as 2009.

Instead of tracking for step the wording now establishes a wage, Police Chief Bruce Uselman said.