June 16, 2024

Wage increases questioned at council

In what is normally a unanimous, easy vote, Creston City Council were at odds over wage increases for certain city employees.

While union employees’ raises and benefits were approved earlier in the year, non-bargaining, non-probationary employees had their wage increase on the table at Tuesday’s council meeting.

The proposed increase for these employees was 5%. While at 3% in previous years, the non-bargaining raises generally keep with the bargaining raises.

Councilmember Richard Madison amended the original motion of a 5% raise, saying he “wants it to be the same level as we did last year at 3%.” Councilmember Martin Graham seconded the amendment. However, the amendment failed, with councilmembers Jocelyn Blazek, Steve Wintermute and Kiki Scarberry voting against it. Councilmember Josh Thompson was absent.

The council then in turn voted on the 5% raise, with Blazek, Wintermute and Scarberry voting for the raise, and Madison and Graham voting against.

While this vote incorporated most non-union city employees, another vote was taken to approve wage increase for non-bargaining, non-probationary part-time library employees. No amendments were made to this motion, with the motion passing 3-1. Blazek, Wintermute and Scarberry voted for the raise, while Graham voted against it. Madison abstained due to personal conflict.

In other news…

Creston Street Superintendent T.J. Parsons notified the council that the public works building at 1100 East Mills St. is near completion. A ribbon cutting for the building will be held Wednesday, June 12, from 3 to 6 p.m.

The council unanimously approved the first reading of amendments to the Creston Parks and Recreation board. These amendments have been workshopped over the past few months, with members of the board vocally against changes.

The Creston Fire Department received a $3,000 grant from the South Central Iowa Community Foundation in order to better protect the master keys the department has for local businesses and residences.

Erin Henze

Originally from Wisconsin, Erin is a recent graduate from UW-Stevens Point. Outside of writing, she loves to read and travel.