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City plans to study pay system for employees

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November 27, 2007

Albany - The city of Albany will vote Tuesday night on whether to spend tens of thousands of dollars on yet another study.  They're thinking about hiring someone to study city salaries. The purpose is to make sure workers are being paid fairly compared to workers in other cities. But it will cost more than a hundred thousand dollars to evaluate all city and Water, gas and light employee positions.

How much should you get paid? It's not an arbitrary figure pulled out of thin air. Typically it's based on what folks in similar jobs make. That's why the city of Albany is taking a new look at its pay and job classification structure.  City Manager Alfred Lott said, "To see if we are actually paying our folks the right amount of money and so we can attract people and if our pay and classifications are comparative and competitive with other people and other cities in particular."

Not only to attract qualified people to work within the city, but to keep the good employees that are already in place.  Lott said, "We don't want to lose those people to other folks because our pay has become non-competitive or our benefits are non-comparative and we don't know it."

The city plans to hire the Archer Company for around $78,000. But the Water, Gas and Light Commission will join in the study bringing the price in at over $100,000.

Lott says the cost is the price of doing business and will pay off in having the right people in the right jobs at the right pay.  He said, "We will gain from that by being able to attract competent, qualified employees and retain them."

City commissioners vote on hiring the Archer Company tonight. If okayed, the study will take several months to complete. The county is paying $47,000 to have a similar pay study done.

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