VANDALIA — The Vandalia City Council passed an ordinance on Monday evening that will allow department directors – at the sole discretion of the City Manager – to retire and be rehired by the city.
The measure, which was tabled in January in order for changes to be made, passed on a 3-1 vote with Mayor Arlene Setzer, whose opposition to retire/rehire is well documented, casting the lone no vote. Council Members Bob Ahlers, Dave Gerhard, and Candice Farst were absent from the meeting.
“I don’t believe in rehire,” Setzer said in January when the ordinance was discussed in a council work session.
The ordinance will require approval in a second reading to take effect. A second vote is expected Feb. 18.
Under the terms of the policy, the retire/rehire option is open only to the Assistant City Manager, Police and Fire Chiefs, Public Service Director, Finance Director, and the Parks & Recreation Director.
Rehired employees will be subject to a 12.5% reduction in salary to take effect two months from the date of rehire. This is an increase from the original proposal which would have reduced salaries by just 10%. All accrued and unused paid leave balances will be carried forward to the new rehire date.
Those employees will not be eligible for cost of living increases but will be eligible for lump sum merit payments within the percentages approved by city council for merit increases.
Rehired employees will be considered at-will employees serving at the pleasure of the City Manager. The Manager will review each employee annually and, at the end of five years evaluate the appropriateness of retaining the employee beyond five years.
Reach Darrell Wacker at (937) 684-8983 or on Twitter @VandaliaDrummer.