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City board to discuss pay raises

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 21, 2014

Vicksburg city employees will learn in about two weeks whether they’re getting a pay raise.

Mayor George Flaggs said Friday pay raises would be the topic of a June 30 board work session and a special meeting July 1.

Flaggs’ announcement came at the close of Friday’s meeting of the Board of Mayor and Aldermen.

He said in April he would know before July 1 whether the city could afford to give employees a raise. The July 1 meeting comes the same time the board gets the final installment of a 5 percent pay raise set by city ordinance in 2002.

The raise, which becomes effective July 1, will boost Flaggs’ salary from $89,000 to $93,450, and the aldermen’s pay from $71,000 to $74,550.

“I believe we can do it,” he said. “Through level funding and continuing to be good stewards of money, this board has captured, or recaptured money of the past, and I think there’s enough to go around, and we want to reward, or compensate, our employees at least to a cost of living adjustment.”

Flaggs said in April he wanted to start giving raises by raising the minimum wage from $7.25 to $8 an hour for the city’s lowest paid employees and then provide raises to the police department and the fire department.

He said Police Chief Walter Armstrong and Fire Chief Charles Atkins both presented proposals for raises in their respective departments that included longevity pay.

“When we considering pay raises, I think it’s important that we consider a cost of living adjustment,” South Ward Alderman Willis Thompson said. “In my opinion a pay raise should be merit-based. I think you should pay employees based on performance. We should provide some retention, and I think that’s the way we should go.”

On the agenda

Meeting Friday, the Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen: 

• Recognized the following employees on their anniversaries: Rick Beers, information technology, and Brenda Bartlett, legal, 15 years; Melvin Holman, fire department, and Samuel Landers, building maintenance, 10 years.

• Approved the board minutes for March 25.

• Heard a presentation on the butterfly garden at the playground at Catfish Row.

• Took under advisement the following bids to replace roofs at the water treatment plant on Haining Road and Fire Station No. 6: Dirtworks Inc. of Vicksburg, $269,000; Guaranteed Roofing Co. Inc. of Pearl, $200,000; M&S Roofing Co. Inc., $176,000.

In a related matter, the board authorized City Clerk Walter Osborne to advertise for bids for new roofs for the Central Fire Station and the city’s vehicle maintenance building.

• Awarded the following bids: shaved ice at the city swimming pool, KCA Enterprises dba Sno-Biz, $500; traffic management supplies, Custom Products Corp. of Jackson; rolls of carpet, Danny Jones, $6.66 per roll for 15 rolls; sand and gravel, Hannett and Green Aggregate of Lexington; pebble lime, Falco Lime of Vicksburg, $164.20 a ton.

The bids for traffic supplies and sand and gravel were by line item.

• Adopted a preliminary order for an ad valorem tax exemption for Cooper Lighting totaling $388,429.12.

• Accepted the resignation of Tommy Jones from the ad hoc recreation committee and appointed Alonzo Stevens as his replacement.

• Approved the following budget amendments: transfer $15,000 from the federal grant account to the Vicksburg Municipal Airport grant account for the final payment for taxiway lighting project; transferred $11,429 from recreation maintenance and supplies to capital improvements other than buildings for storm damage repair at Halls Ferry Park.

• Approved a request from Vicksburg Main Street to hold the fifth annual Bricks and Spokes Oct. 4, and purchase promotional items not to exceed $2,000.

• Authorized Osborne to advertise for bids for asphalt and aggregate and riprap.

• Approved paying a requisition totaling $27,872.97 for HD Supply Co. of Jackson for water meters.

• Authorized Community Development Director Victor Gray-Lewis to clean and clear the following properties: 170 Irene St., 1412 Martin Luther King Blvd., and 1606/1608 Martin Luther King Blvd.

• Approved paying $663 for a half-page ad in The Sip magazine.

• Approved paying $3,174.69 for the city’s share of expenses at the Vicksburg-Tallulah Regional Airport.

• Approved bank statements from Trustmark Bank and BancorpSouth.

• Approved the following reports: city sexton, privilege license, mayor and treasurer, tax collection, delinquent tax collection and detail budget.

• Adopted a resolution accepting a temporary easement to clean a drainage ditch on Miller Street.

• Adopted a resolution granting a special exception granting Yvonne Mixon a special exception to operate a drive-up fast food restaurant in a light industrial zone at 3620 U.S. 61 South. The Vicksburg Planning Commission on June 3 recommended approval, but a resident in the area of the business appealed the decision claiming a problem with parking. South Ward Alderman Willis Thompson said he looked at the site and saw no problem.

• Authorized Mayor George Flaggs to sign an agreement with Waste Management to collect trash at city buildings.  The agreement allows the city to get a $75 discount on its trash collection bill.

• Authorized Flaggs to sign an agreement with the Mississippi Department of Archives and History to for a survey of homes on an area between Bowmar Avenue and Polk Street and Confederate Avenue and Second Street for nomination a National Historic District. The survey is funded through a state grant.

• Authorized Flaggs to sign an agreement with Gulf Coast Electric Co. of Perkinston to install a generator at the Dorsey Street pumping station. The bid was awarded in April.

• Authorized Flaggs to sign a lease agreement with Unitech for a copier for the mayor’s office at $75 a month.

• Approved the claims docket.