Council backs new wage plan for city employees
New wage rates to take effect in 2017
BY KEVIN BONESKE
A series of wage rates for city employees that will take effect next year was approved Thursday by the Rhinelander City Council.
The wage plan had been put together by a Madison-based firm, Carlson Dettmann Consulting LLC, which studied the city’s current wage rates for non-union employees and compared them to other units of government.
For positions determined to be receiving wages above the related pay grade, no raise was included. However, a series of increases totaling $12,667 annually was included in the plan.
“The costs related to implementation are manageable for the city, just through turnover alone potentially,” said Charles Carlson, a consultant with Carlson Dettmann. “As long as there’s an appeal process that you’re going to approve, it seems to me that you could move forward and adopt Jan. 1 (as the effective date).”
The wage plan approved for next year incorporates 17 pay grades with 11 steps in each pay grade in an hourly format. The hourly wages range from $12.90 to $42.22 under that structure.
At the top end of the wage plan next year, the hourly rate of pay for fire chief Terry Williams will increase by 87 cents to $41.28, an added cost of $1,810, based on being in the highest pay grade at step 10. His current annual salary is $84,053.
The city’s highest annual salary in the wage plan is listed for the police chief, a position presently vacant following the departure of Michael Steffes with an annual salary of $85,904.