Saturday, February 14, 2009

This Recession Affects Everyone, and February is the Longest Month of the Year

It's been a long week. A little discouraging and morale testing. But, in the end, I realize you need to be thankful for what you have. What's the line from the Sheryl Crow song? Oh yes, It's not having what you want, it's wanting what you've got.

The North Liberty City Council decided, in their ultimate wisdom (cough cough), that the budget for the upcoming fiscal year did not have room in it to give city staff anything close to a decent raise, even though our city administrator and asst. city admin. had already completed the budget and determined that yes, there was money for staff raises. Only 1 council member stood up for staff. The rest of them wanted no raise at all or 1%. This, after they spent thousands of dollars to do a compensation study last year that determined that city staff was underpaid compared to other cities North Liberty's size. This, after our admin. and asst. admin looked at the rise in the cost of living nationwide and looked at what other cities in our area were giving for raises.

It was a real blow. Not just that the raise isn't there, although that does smart, considering our health insurance rates just went up, which means we'll be taking less home in every paycheck because our raise won't even cover the increase. What is discouraging is the lack of respect the city council members showed city staff. The council doesn't keep the city running. It's the city staff that does!

It feels a little like playing God to me. I fail to understand why these people should be able to control my purse strings AFTER they were presented with a budget that was put together by the two people in this city who were hired to be stewards of the city's money. And they do a good job.

I don't expect sympathy, and I especially don't expect sympathy from people who have lost their jobs and are now struggling to make ends meet while they find a new job. But I will say that this recession is affecting everyone, in some form or another.

1 comment:

Annie said...

I completely understand your dilemna and stand with you. I have experienced much the same think in my workplace with the added offense of at least one administrator on campus getting a $14,000/year raise just in the last two months. There is no excuse; no justification.