The Carmel City Council met Nov. 21 to discuss employee hours, firefighter overtime and more.
WHAT HAPPENED: The Carmel City Council unanimously voted down an ordinance that would have extended city employee work weeks from 37.5 to 40 hours.
WHAT IT MEANS: In the 1980s, the city shortened the workweek at a time when it could not afford to give pay raises, and it remained in place after raises were implemented again. It was suggested previously that the 37.5-hour work week leads to more overtime and makes it difficult when comparing salaries to other cities and companies. After much debate in committee, it was decided the proposal would cause scheduling problems and eventually cost the city millions of dollars each year.
WHAT HAPPENED: The City Council unanimously approved $25,000 from the city’s general fund to be moved to the Carmel Fire Dept. for overtime pay.
WHAT IT MEANS: Carmel firefighters worked extra hours for the BMW Championship Golf Tournament at Crooked Stick. Western Golf reimbursed the City of Carmel $25,000 for the overtime labor and now that money is being transferred to CFD.
WHAT HAPPENED: The Carmel City Council voted unanimously to approve transferring $125,000 to help pay for CFD overtime.
WHAT IT MEANS: CFD has more than a dozen vacant positions, and as a result there’s been overtime on occasion so the city can have an adequate number of firefighters on every shift. CFD Chief David Haboush said the firefighters are happy to get the extra money and there’s not a big risk of over-working them at this point. In many respects it saves the city money, he said, because it can be cheaper to pay overtime than hire additional workers who require health care and benefits. All of the funds come from other line items in the CFD budget that were not needed at the end of 2016.