Mayor: Upgrade of Macedonia service facilities needed

Ken Lahmers
Special to MyTownNEO

MACEDONIA – Mayor Nick Molnar told City Council on March 25 that the city will schedule a public informational meeting in the future to outline plans for upgrading service department facilities.

“We have four or five buildings that the department works out of, and they are getting old and need to be replaced,” he said. “The barns we use at Longwood Manor have dirt floors, which are almost unheard of among area communities.”

The mayor showed photos of the deteriorating facilities during the online Council session, and noted the city “has put a lot of money over the years” into repairing the buildings. He added gasoline tanks and pumps also need to be upgraded.

“I have no intention of going to the voters for new tax revenue for the replacement of these buildings; we are looking at other funding mechanisms,” he said.

DISPATCHERS PACT

Council ratified a three-year contract (2020 to 2022) with dispatchers represented by the Ohio Patrolman’s Benevolent Association. It is the fourth of five union contracts the city has ratified, with a service workers' pact still remaining to be hashed out.

The contract calls for 2 percent pay hikes in each of the three years. For 2020 and 2021, the increases will be retroactive to Jan. 1.

Effective April 1, 2021, health insurance premium contributions for dispatchers will be 6.25 percent for wellness plan coverage and 12.5 for non-wellness, while effective Jan. 1, 2022, the percentages will be 7.5 percent and 15 percent, respectively.

Effective Jan. 1, 2020, bargaining unit members who perform multi-jurisdiction dispatching or maintain an approved medical dispatch certification will receive an annual payment of $750, up from $250 in the last contract.

Another change is that after one year of continuous service, each employee will be credited with an amount of accrued vacation time based on the years of service he or she will complete during that calendar year.

An employee who takes all vacation time credited for the year and separates from employment before his or her anniversary date will be required to reimburse the city a pro rata share of the vacation time taken.

A “fair share fee” was eliminated. It previously required employees who had completed 60 days of employment and had not become union members to pay an amount not to exceed the union’s regular monthly dues to an employee organization or charitable group.

“We have the best dispatchers around, and I’m glad to see this contract in place,” said Fire Chief Brian Ripley.

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