Jobs, Salaries and Finances Reviewed
By Kari Rogers
BELLEAIR BLUFFS - One of the first orders of business discussed was the possible revision of city job descriptions. Revisions would be made to the jobs of Fire Chief, City Clerk, Public Works Director, Human Resources/ Finance Associate and the Assistant to the City Clerk's job.
Mayor Chris Arbutine said that he wanted to approve a motion for these jobs to include more accurate descriptions.
Citizen John Kaber commented that, "these revisions are nothing more than elongating what we already know." He also said that he was concerned with the mayor's comments on the city's growth. Unlike the mayor's opinion, Kaber feels that the city has not grown within the last ten years. He further feels, unlike the mayor, that the workload in the city has not grown either.
In relation to the matter, Citizen Mark Nudel expressed concern over Public Work's Director's, Robert David's performance. He asked commissioners "if any of them remembered his rating?" Later, he recalled, "David's rating was a zero." Commissioner Robert Russo explained that, "although David was given a zero rating two years ago, his performance had massively improved over the last two and a half years, and that he has received better ratings since."
Concerning these revisions, Commissioner David Shimkus stated, "I think it is better to have more definition rather than less definition." The mayor also explained "that better defining these job descriptions is not to give the city clerk more power, but to help people better understand what they do." In the end, the motion carried.
In other news, Commissioners voted to hire Patrick Competelli as the city's new Fire Chief. His official start date is set for May 1, 2008.
Raising the salaries of City Clerk, Debrah Sullivan, and Director of Public Works Robert David to $68,000 was also discussed. Some commissioners wanted to see more evidence as to why salaries should be raised. Commissioner Troy Krotz questioned, "Whether they had hard data to show if this was actually needed?" He also commented that he felt the salary increase was "obsessive." He explicated that "four years from now, the salary would be capped at $83,000 if a cap was put in place, and that if a cap was not put in place, the salary rate for the positions would rise even more. Commissioner Hunt Brand agreed and Commissioner Russo agreed with Commissioner Krotz.
On the contrary, Mayor Arbutine replied to these uncertainties by saying, "they both go above and beyond," and later said, "he felt they deserved the raise, because their jobs had changed." The matter was "tabled," and will be reviewed again at next month's workshop.
One of the final things discussed was whether the city should have an "inter-local agreement with Pinellas County for decorative street lighting. Pertaining to the matter, Commissioner Russo that, "everyone should pay for their own electricity on their own road." Commissioners decide that they would approve the motion, if the plan could be amended to say that "sockets be removed, and further to say that "they did not have to pay for extra power."
Remember to keep reading the Clearwater Gazette, to see how these and other matters will unfold!
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