Oregon council gives city employees 2.25% raise

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

Oregon’s nonsafety employees received a 2.25 percent pay raise, effective Sept. 22, following a vote approved by City Council last week.

The increase will cost the city’s general fund $125,000 through June 30, Mike Beazley, city administrator, said.

The raise covers 66 workers represented by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees Local 755.

The current three-year collective bargaining agreement requires a wage reopener for Sept. 22 through June 30.

The first year of the contract gave the workers no raise; in the second year, the increase was 2.5 percent.

Clerical, streets, water and wastewater treatment, and police records staffers are among those receiving the pay hikes.

“These are affordable,” Mr. Beazley said. “We think they are fair and balanced.”

The council vote was 7-0.

The employees’ pay varies according to their seniority and job. A first-year building maintenance worker is paid $21.41 with the raise in place. That rises to $25.65 in his or her seventh year on the job.

A meter reader in the first year on the job will be paid $22.33 per hour, a wage that increases to $26.61 in the seventh year.

In other action, council authorized Mayor Mike Seferian to sign an agreement with the University of Toledo to lease a portion of property at 7215 Corduroy Rd. for a pilot project to improve the water quality of the Wolf Creek watershed and the beaches at Maumee Bay State Park.

The university plans to establish a wetland system at the state park that will clean storm water runoff.

The wetlands will need 6.2 acres of land upstream along Wolf Creek and capture sediment otherwise destined for Maumee Bay.

The leased acreage was purchased by the city with part of a $62,391 coastal management assistance grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The university will pay $1 for the 25-year lease and assume all responsibility for the project.

“We view this as a real, positive step for Oregon,” Mr. Beazley said of the wetlands project. “We believe it is a real win for Oregon and also for the bay.”

Councilman Jerry Peach concurred. “This is a very positive project. There is no downside. This is one more step the city has taken to reduce sedimentation,” in Lake Erie, he explained.

The council voted unanimously in favor of the lease.