Dover City Manager Scott Koenig has recommended raises for four key staff members to reflect either the additional duties they had taken on or for promotions they had received since a reorganization of managerial staff back in December 2011.
Koenig made his recommendations at Dover City Council's Legislative, Finance & Administration Committee meeting held Monday night in City Hall.
The Legislative, Finance & Administration Committee voted 3-1, with one absent, to recommend approval of Koenig's request to Dover City Council.
Koenig said the city saved about $215,000 in annual salary by implementing an interim managerial plan in late 2011, but he wanted to compensate four staff members who had since taken on additional duties or permanent assignments since that time by increasing their salaries by a combined $30,274.
In 2011, for instance, Director of Planning & Community Development Ann Marie Townshend accepted the additional duties of overseeing life safety, building inspections and the Economic Development Office, Koenig said. In June 2012, Dover City Council assigned economic development oversight to the office of Mayor Carleton Carey Sr., but in the same month Zachary Carter retired as the city's director of the Department of Parks & Recreation. Koenig then asked Townshend to become the parks & recreation head in addition to her planning duties, with the exception of Dover Public Library Director Margie Cyr, who became a direct report to the city manager as part of the changes, Koenig said.
Townshend took on the additional duties on July 1, 2012, the beginning of the 2013 fiscal year. Her duties as head of two departments had allowed the city to save at least $81,000 per year, Koenig said. But, to fairly compensate her, he recommended that Townshend's salary be increased 16.93 percent to $107,315, including her managerial bonus of $4,200 and $11,340 for her parks & recreation duties.
Townshend addressed the legislative committee to clarify the proposal she had made to Koenig relative to her salary, which she requested as compensation for increased hours at the office. Townshend pointed out that, technically speaking, she requested a 16.9 percent salary increase, but if the bonus was factored in, the increase was 11.8 percent over her current compensation, she said.
Townshend said she had enthusiastically accepted her additional duties. Among other things, she worked to reverse declining revenues for the parks & recreation department while working with the business community to simplify the zoning process, continued the city's tough stance toward vacant and dangerous buildings and worked with Dover Police Chief James Hosfelt to develop the safe communities program.
"Throughout my seven years with the City of Dover, I have been a devoted employee and have always worked hard to make sure that my efforts and those of my staff are in the best interest of the city," she said. "This is my home too, and I am firmly committed to making Dover a great place to live and work."
Koenig also recommended raises for Water/Wastewater Maintenance Supervisor Ralph McDougal, Information Technology Director Andy Siegel and Financial Reporting & Accounting Manager Tracey Lisiecki.
When the public utilities operations/construction manager retired, this position was not filled and the city construction crew that reported to that position then began reporting to McDougal. Since those were not part of his original duties, Public Works Director Sharon Duca requested a review to ensure equity in pay. Based on the salary range of a similar position in Kent County, Koenig recommended a raise of 11.77 percent to $61,000 for McDougal.
Within the Information Technology Department, Siegel was temporarily upgraded to interim IT director by the former city manager, Koenig said. Koenig then promoted Siegel to IT director, but no adjustment was made to his salary and his two and a half years of service as interim IT director. To compensate for his error, Koenig recommended that Siegel's salary be increased 7.53 percent to $82,059.
As for the Department of Finance, City Controller Donna Mitchell's office had assumed much of the duties of preparing the budget as Koenig shifted most of those duties from his office. Mitchell opted to not accept additional compensation and recommended instead that Financial Reporting & Accounting Manager Tracey Lisiecki receive a temporary bonus of $175. But, based on the recommendation by human resources, Koenig recommended increasing Lisiecki's salary 4.01 percent to $71,600.
Committee Chairman Sean Lynn and community members Daniel Shevock and Michael Rushe voted for the proposal while Councilman William Hare voted no. Councilman David Anderson was absent.
Hare said he preferred to see the IT director receive a one-time bonus as compensation rather than give him a permanent raise.
"There are quite a few IT guys out there looking for positions," he said.