CIVIC CENTER -- After more than five months of negotiations, hundreds
of city employees received a pay hike this week that will raise their
salaries incrementally over the next three years.
Since early July, members of the Burbank City Employees Association
have been working without a labor contract, a situation that was ended at
the City Council meeting Tuesday with a 4-0 approval -- with Mayor Stacey
Murphy absent -- of a new three-year deal.
Associaion President Kathleen Lindblom was pleased with the deal,
which provides for a minimum raises of 2.5%, 2.8% and 3.3% in each
succeeding year. Provisions attached to the first year are retroactive to
“Good contract,” Lindblom said Thursday. “We’re thrilled.”
City labor negotiator and Management Services Director John Nicoll did
not return calls for comment.
In addition to ratifying a labor contract with the 700-member
employees association, the council also approved raises for City Clerk
Judie Sarquiz and City Treasurer Jim Rogers as well as unrepresented
managers and executives -- which include the 13 department heads.
Sarquiz and Rogers each received 5% raises, while the unrepresented
managers were given a 3.46% hike. The executives received a minimum 2.25%
increase. With a satisfactory evaluation, they can make more.
While the other moves were made without much discussion, City Council
members expressed some concern about raising the salaries of Sarquiz and
Rogers. Both elected positions have received recent pay hikes. With
Tuesday’s increases, both make $77,208 a year in base pay.
“At first blush my thought was that anybody who runs for those
positions knows what it pays,” Councilman David Laurell said Thursday.
“With the clerk and treasurer, it’s a full-time job.”
However, Laurell said, it’s important to give the elected positions
competitive salaries so the city doesn’t risk losing capable employees to
the private sector.
Councilman Dave Golonski said he didn’t have a problem granting raises
to Sarquiz and Rogers.
“I think their salaries should be in line with their scope of
services,” Golonski said. “We want to make sure people are interested in
Sarquiz has had two cost-of-living raises totaling 5% since her 1997
election. In an Oct. 14 memo, Sarquiz had pointed out that her position
paid 11% less than five comparable cities. Sarquiz also said Rogers was
22% below the average.
On Thursday, Sarquiz said she was pleased with the council’s decision.
“I’m glad they feel the positions are important enough to bring these
positions in line,” she said.
The City Council is reviewing the salaries of City Manager Bud Ovrom
and City Atty. Dennis Barlow. Those reviews will be completed in the next
several weeks, officials said.
Burbank City Employees Association
1999-2000: 2.5% raise
2000-2001: 2.8% raise
2001-2002: 3.3% raise
City Clerk and City Treasurer
Previous salary: $73,536
Current salary: $77,208