CATEGORY: ALD Tupelo City Council

AUTHOR: MOULDE

HED:Council mulls extending pay study

By Philip Moulden

Daily Journal

Tupelo's City Council, committed to giving 4 percent pay raises to city workers this year, today will consider revising a contract with Mississippi State University to produce a wage study to help determine future pay scales for personnel.

The council provided only 2 percent pay hikes for workers last year based on its intent to obtain the salary study in time for budget preparation this year.

The council approved the study by the John C. Stennis Institute of Government at MSU in December, with a provision that it be completed in June. The council agreed to pay $3,200 for the work.

Results were to guide the city is setting pay scales in line with wages paid workers elsewhere doing similar jobs.

An MSU spokeswoman said earlier this summer the study had been completed, but it was never presented to the council. Some council members, acting as a committee of the council, and the administration deemed a "draft" of the study insufficient and sent it back for revisions, Ward 2 Councilman George Taylor disclosed last week.

He said the study had not included comparisons of private industry, which competes for workers with the city. Officials said the new results if an extension of the study is approved should be available in April.

In other action, Mayor Larry Otis will give the annual "state of the city" address.

It will be the first such report by Otis, who was elected in special balloting in December, to fill the post vacated by Glenn McCullough Jr., who was appointed a Tennessee Valley Authority director.

McCullough, elected in 1997, began delivering "state of the city" reports to the council in 1998.

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