Sunday, January 18, 2009


Dear Freedom Of Speech,

I would like to address your readers not only as a concerned city employee but also as a concerned city taxpayer.

With the economy the way it is and the fact that there was a "freeze" put on salaries, there should not be raises given to just 2 non-bargaining employees.

I am concerned that if the council approves the pay raises of ONLY 2 city employees that they are discriminating against the other estimated 50 non-bargaining city employees.

Although a freeze is in effect, the unions were given a 1% longevity raise whereas the non-bargaining employees were denied this.

It has been stated that these 2 employees will be taking on more duties as the city re-assumes the billing of the sewage and trash. When the Sewer billing was contracted out and therefore the workload reduced substantially there was not a "DECREASE" in pay, so the logic of giving a raise for doing what those positions use to do does not make sense.

I don't think that just because a department takes in additional duties requires certain employees in that department to get a raise and others not.

It is apparent that there is a lot of "PICKING AND CHOOSING" going on when it comes to raises and therefore others are being discriminated against.

As a matter of record a city employee passed away about a year ago and the bulk the work load and paperwork has been assumed by the controller's office. Not once has the controller's office asked for compensation for having to take on these extra duties.

Yet these 2 sewer office employees were given a 20% and 7% raise in 2007 when the rest of the non-bargaining employees got a measly 3% raise.

And now these same 2 employees are requesting a 22% and 12% increase in pay respectively.

Where does the justification come from?

Anytime any other department takes on additional work this same additional work flows into the Controller's office. The Controller's office is the only office in the city that handles paperwork from ALL other departments and it is done with minimal problems and little or no complaints.

These 4 employees in the Controller's office have over 65 years of employment with the city. That's a lot of dedicated work and service to the city, and 2 of these employees started their employment in the sewer office so they are very much aware of how that office operates.

Patti Byerley

Freedom Of Speech would like to say:

We feel that it is unfair if the City of New Albany does not apply the same rules for all employees salaries. Is it true the New Albany billing office has been contracting an outside firm to do the mailing of utility bills?

Is the current New Albany billing staff keeping up to date with filing liens to collect delinquent bills? Does this staff still have the authority to forgive or reduce utility bills?