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Los Al to Talk 9 Percent Raise For City Staff

Also on the City Council agenda, city leaders will consider looking for a new city attorney, keeping the city clerk, and reviewing the city manager's performance.

Los Alamitos will hold a special meeting on city employee pay and benefits Monday.

Officials are scheduled to vote on new agreements with a handful of staffers that calls for for non-represented employees to pay 8 percent of their retirement benefit costs but also gives them a 9 percent bump in pay. 

The 3-year deal is expected to cost the city between $30,520 and $31,520, official say.

The issue of employee salaries was one of a number of contentious issues at the last meeting. 

The previous City Council voted to approve the new contract, and moments later -- after two council members completed their terms and two new council members were sworn in -- the new City Council reversed the contract decision and voted to postpone the decision. 

Also according to the agenda, officials are scheduled to 

  • Discuss the way the city elects its mayor and mayor pro tem
  • Decide whether staff should begin the search for a new city attorney.
  • Vote whether to appoint the former city clerk as the city clerk again.
  • To review the City Manager's performance in closed session

The next official city council meeting takes place at Jan. 22 at 6 p.m.

To read the full agenda, click here. 

met00 January 06, 2013 at 01:22 AM
Pay for a private sector CEO with 5-10 years of experience, 10 direct reports, a BA and a $4,000,000 budget the average (in the Long Beach area) is about $100,000 with a benefits package. The median income for a family in Los Alamitos is $55,286 (2010). The OC Register reported that our City Manager makes $170,000 + benefits a year. A 9% raise is $15,300. Now, we can say “but look, we haven’t had a raise in that position in years!”, but that’s not 100% accurate. The current City Manager was the Director of Rec before taking the position, and believe me, she wasn’t making $170,000 in that position. Is the City Manager worth another $1,275/month? I have a better question. Is the City Manager worth $14,167/month, which is what we are paying today? Every once in a while there comes a point in time where you have to ask, "are we on the right path for our long term health?" That point is right now. The City of Los Alamitos has to rightsize. We have to take a look at what we are and what we want to be. We have to set up staff to be that, and more than that we have to get the right talent and pay them competitive to private industry, not to the City of Cypress next door (which is more than four times the size of Los Al).
tiny January 06, 2013 at 04:31 PM
It's just monopoly money anyways. And if that money isn't invested in physically solid things of some sort, they're gonna have a net worth of jack down the line.
Dr. Zillman January 06, 2013 at 06:42 PM
The salaries are one thing. The benefit packages are what remain in fantasy land.
met00 January 06, 2013 at 07:37 PM
Tiny, it's real money. It's just treated like monopoly money.
met00 January 06, 2013 at 07:56 PM
We have to rightsize the city. 50% of our budget goes to police services, which is fine, but the balance has to be controlled. Pensions were offered as a way to offset underpaying public servants compared to their private industry counterparts. But the reality is that the compensation package is well over what is offered in private enterprise. The City Manager has underneath that position: 1) Administrative Services 2) Community Development 3) Public Works 4) Recreation and Community Services 5) Police Services So, we have FIVE directs reporting to the CM by structure. Under (1) We have HR, Finance, CATV and "Risk Management" Under (2) We have Planning, Building, Neighborhood Preservation, Business License and CDBG Under (3) We have Engineering (outsourced) and Public Services Under (4) We have Camp, Sport, Special Events. Aquatics, Youth and Senior Services and Classes. (5) really has it's own budgets.... We have 5-6 Directs that report to the CM. We have a budget of a bit over $10,500,000. Of that about $5,000,000 is spent on police services. The City Attorney gets about $160,000. The City Council gets about $75,000. That leaves about $5,265,000 to be "managed" by the CM. That's about $475 per person to "run" the city of about 2.5 square miles (subtracting the JFTB) with 11,000 people in it.
met00 January 06, 2013 at 08:21 PM
The reality is that for five direct reports and a budget of $5Mil we don't need a CM with 20 years experience as a CM. We need a CM who was an Assistant CM at a large city for 3-5 years who is looking for his first CM position. This should pay about $85,000+ benefits (including pensions) or $95,000+ benefits (excluding pension). If we are paying more then we are paying way too much. If the City were to rightsize City Hall, we would have a CM and assistant CM (a recent college grad on first ACM job) for less than the current CM. We would have a Director of Rec and an Assistant Rec who is being trained to be the next director. We would have a Director of Public Works and Development and that would be the "management" team (an optional Director of Admin, but the ACM could fill that role with the CM). HR services could be outsourced along with Building an Planning. In other words, we could reduce the size of the City Government and go with people who want to do well here so that they can move on to bigger and better things. We should be hiring people who see Los Alamitos as a step to moving their career UP, not as a place to end up. Every person we hire should be looking at leaving in 3-5 years and moving on to the next step in their career ladder. I love Cory (current Director of Rec), but if he is still here in four more years we have done something wrong. This is his first Director of Rec job, and we should be training him to move up and out, not stay here.
Steve Donovan January 06, 2013 at 08:38 PM
Excellent points and supporting data met00. Bloated public servant comp packages are a serious and widespread problem that is enabled by an apathetic citizenry. Your public/private sector comparison should be understood by every family in Los Al who should then demand a clearly justified rightsizing.
met00 January 06, 2013 at 09:06 PM
You will find more of this analysis in the two most recent topics at: http://www.letsfixlosal.com/ The first is a discussion of the special council meeting and the second is another look at the "giveaway" that is being planned by the City. Please feel free to drop by and contribute there.
Raoul Duke January 07, 2013 at 03:31 AM
Name one CEO with a compensation package of $100k. You're sniffing glue. Private CEOs pull down 10x what public CEOs make and that's before stock options, golden parachutes and access to corporate planes and other perks.
Raoul Duke January 07, 2013 at 03:37 AM
Yes, by all means met, let's hire folks with absolutely no experience to manage a multi-million dollar municipal corporation. Let's roll over employees every couple years so that there is no long term leadership, loss of institutional knowledge, constantly changing policies, no long term vision or planning....just a training ground for greenhorns to cut their teeth on and move on. Remind me to never hire you as a management consultant. You must have studied at the Sara Palin School of Imbecilic Studies!
met00 January 07, 2013 at 04:20 AM
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Years In Field/Career 5 Salary (Annual) $115,000 Bonus (Annual) $20,000 More Details: Job Location * (City withheld for privacy), California, United States Budget Managed $100,000,000 Number Supervised 30 People Managed Individual/Professional Level People Management Tasks Hire employees, Mentor and advise, Promote employees, Assign and evaluate work Stock Exchange Other / Not Listed Company's Annual Sales $30,000,000 Employer Type Private Practice/Firm Employer's Product/Business Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation Employer Name (Employer Name withheld for privacy) Years with Employer 0 Commute Time 20 Salary Type Standard Full-Time 40+ Hours Per Week Vacation Weeks 2 Health Benefit Dental, Vision, Medical / Health All Benefits/Perks Life Insurance/Disability, Paid Holidays / Vacation, Company Pension Plan, Paid Sick Leave, Stock Options, Cell Phone, Company Car / Automobile, Gym / Health Club / Fitness Membership, Room and Board Signing Authority Yes Amount Authorized $1,000,000 School, Degree, or Major 1983 Age (Age withheld for privacy) Job 5 Years Ago Small Business Owner / Operator
met00 January 07, 2013 at 04:20 AM
Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Non-Profit Organization Years In Field/Career 20 Salary (Annual) $90,000 More Details: Job Location * (City withheld for privacy), California, United States Budget Managed * $2,000,000 Number Supervised 5 People Managed Middle Management Level People Management Tasks Hire employees, Mentor and advise, Promote employees, Assign and evaluate work, Terminate employees, Review performance annually Stock Exchange Privately Held Employer Type * Government - State & Local Employer's Product/Business convention center Years with Employer 25 Number of Employees 15 Commute Time 7 Salary Type Standard Full-Time 40+ Hours Per Week Vacation Weeks 6 Health Benefit Dental, Vision, Medical / Health All Benefits/Perks 401(k), Life Insurance/Disability, Paid Holidays / Vacation, Paid Sick Leave, Defined Benefit (DB) Retirement Plan, Flex-Time / Flexible Schedule, Free Drinks/Coke/Juice/Water, Optional Telecommute / Work from Home, Relocation Expenses, Casual Dress/Atmosphere, Education/Training/Tuition/Certification Reimbursement, Pets/Dog at Work Signing Authority Yes Amount Authorized $75,000 Age (Age withheld for privacy) Job 5 Years Ago Deputy General Manager
met00 January 07, 2013 at 04:21 AM
These are self-reported from a major compensation site for comparative purposes. For the comparison I used: 5-10 direct reports $4,000,000 budget BA 5-10 years experience
met00 January 07, 2013 at 04:29 AM
Are you suggesting the the Assistant City Manger from say, Cypress with 5 years of experience as an Assistant City Manger is the same as hiring "olks with absolutely no experience to manage a multi-million dollar municipal corporation", or are you just misstating my position to bring up a strawman so you can claim victory? Los Al replaced Angie, an experienced Director of Rec with Cory, who was basically her Assistant Director of Rec for at least two years prior. Cory has done an excellent job running the Rec department for the last year. In two years I hop Cory will have someone under him who he is preping to fill his position, so Cory can move on to bigger and better things. He is very talented and he deserves the opportunity to go as far as his talent will bring him. And that is much further than running the Rec Department for a city of 11,000. And I wouldn't expect you to hire me as a management consultant. Not because I don't do it, because I actually do consulting for management and technology (formerly with EDS before I was a CTO). But because you want inside the box thinking to tell you that what worked yesterday will work tomorrow and I would just piss you off by pointing out that you can't get better results and do better than your competitors by doing exactly what they do.
tiny January 07, 2013 at 04:35 PM
What's puzzling to me is how Krugman and the Libs think the money printing, or monetization of the debt without end will fix the economy? QE3 is the Fed using 40B/month of money they create out of thin air to buy MBS from banks that they couldn't sell otherwise. QE4 is an additional 45B/month of the Fed buying Treasury Bonds. This is 1T/year of new money backed by what we outsourced in jobs over the past decades, and the big inflation hasn't kicked in because the big banks are holding cash trying to ride out the next shock and because I guess there's not the business to lend to and make a buck. The labor force participation rate is at an record low 63% despite 5 years of all this quantitative easing, bailout and near zero Fed Funds Rate. I think the Greek people owe on average 30K/person with a small population whilst we in the US owe about 50K/person with 320 million people. The BRIC countries are setting up financial arrangements outside of the still world's reserve currencies and the captain of our ship has no course set to correct the doom of our currency.
tiny January 07, 2013 at 04:37 PM
world reserve currency
tiny January 08, 2013 at 02:12 AM
A chat with Paul: www.youtube.com/watch?v=grI1zoMzH9I
CDC January 08, 2013 at 02:13 AM
Vote them ALL out. Public servants are just that "servants". Why should they make more than the average salary? Especially in hard times! This is beyond insane.

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