Candidates running for alderman in the 6th and 7th wards told residents Tuesday they hope to hold down pay increases for city workers.

But while some said no to any pay hikes, others took a less austere approach.

The candidate forum, held at Haven Middle School, was sponsored by the Central Street Neighbors Association.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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7 Comments

  1. Recognize excellence
    In an economic downtown, with tight City budgets and stagnant revenues, the City’s personnel expenses are not immune from adjustments. However, holding the line on across-the-board pay increases when the CPI is flat should not preclude merit raises for City employees who demonstrate exceptional dedication and extraordinary contributions. The City’s wage structure should still recognize and encourage excellence.

    Jane Grover

    1. Jane – what is your postion on raises for firefighters?
      Jane – I noticed on your web site you have been endorsed by the firefighters. What is your position on raises for firefighters. I noticed you suggested we privatize trash pick up – any suggestions on cuts in the fire department?

      Are you planning to monitor their overtime? I notice on the Central street neighbors aldermanic questionaire you were in favor of cutting unnecessary overtime.

      Jane can you suggest how many employees will be getting raises for exceptional performance? ( what percent?)

      I have trouble with all those endorsed by the firefigthers (not just You!)- since it appears to me pasts councils have not done things in the taxpayers interest when it comes to what the firefighters wanted. ( It appears Kevin O’Connor also brought this issue up of city employees working for those running for public offices here at the Central Street Neighbors forum)

    2. As everywhere else, the
      As everywhere else, the excellent workers will be rewarded with getting to keep their jobs.

  2. Agreed!
    Freezing pay raises for those employees that do exceptional work is a bad decision. When incentives are withdrawn, talented people leave. Even in this economy there will be some who are unwilling to stick around when their hard work goes uncompensated. A smarter course of action would be to recognize the best and brightest as they will be the ones to steer us out of the mess we are in now.

    1. If “Raises” frozen where will they Go?
      Get with the times if raises are frozen you said that the best and brightest will go else where. All I want to say is go where? unemployment is expected to hit 10% by the end of the year. Maybe the city should be looking to cut some people and look at other cities who are doing the same. There is a huge pool of extreemly well quilifyed unemployed people looking for jobs that is growning everyday. I would like to know one city worker who would be willing to quit ther job if their pay was frozen right now! Including the fireman! Please stand up! When home owners all go in to have there taxes lowered because of the 15%-20% decline in value (see sales data some areas much worst in evanston) what is the city going to do then? Freeze now maybe you will have to cut less jobs in the future because there will be big cuts!

    2. The ones to steer us out of
      The ones to steer us out of this mess will not be government employees living off of our tax money. It will be those people who save money by living beneath their means so that entrepreneurs can borrow those savings and start up new businesses or expand existing ones thus hiring the unemployed. The emphasis at this time must be savings by workers and capital investment by businesses, not tax increases to fund busybodies on the public payroll.

  3. Pay cuts
    Forget about “holding down pay increases,” I want to hear discussions about pay cuts, layoffs, and division closures!

    When are our representatives going to take this budget crisis seriously?

    I think people are under the misguided belief that the economy is just going quickly turn around as it has done in the past, tax receipts will grow, and things will somehow work themselves out without anyone enduring any pain.

    I’m sorry, but that isn’t going to happen. Those 4th quarter pension fund losses of 30% will never be made up. Property values will not be restored to their 2005-2006 levels for a decade or more. People’s spending habits have undergone a sea change. Thrift is in.

    The party is over and tough decisions need to be made. That means a massive reduction in the amount of people employed by the City of Evanston.

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