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City workforce shows recovery

By Sara McManamy-Johnson sjohnson@lebanondemocrat.com • Updated Jul 16, 2014 at 9:59 PM

June 2009, Lebanon’s city leaders sat in council chambers trying to figure out how to slash more than $1.5 million from the city’s budget. At least 32 jobs were on the line.

Wednesday, the city’s leaders put some finishing touches on the city’s 2014-2015 budget. The 33 positions funded Wednesday included promotions, hour-increases and created positions.

“A few years ago, the city went through losing a few positions and not backfilling positions,” said Robert Springer, Lebanon’s commissioner of finance and revenues. 

As the economy recovers and Lebanon continues growing, though, city council has decided it’s time to add some staff and change position titles and salaries to more accurately reflect the jobs performed, according to Springer.

City council unanimously approved second readings for 32 of those changes. The 33rd position, a part-time secretary for the fire department, passed with Councilor Kathy Warmath casting the lone “Nay” vote.

With Wednesday’s vote, council funded the creation of an economic development director position, an investigator position for the police department, four part-time dispatcher positions for the police department, three shift-commander positions for the fire department, a garage worker position, a sanitation worker position and a valve-maintenance technician for the gas department.

Multiple positions were also converted from part-time to full-time. Those positions included a public safety technician position, an animal-control worker position and an aquatics assistant manager position.

The remaining positions funded were promotions for existing employees.

Council previously approved funding for a human resources director position. According to Springer, the position closed to applicants Tuesday, but not before the city received 21 applications for the spot.

“Which is extraordinary,” said Springer.

He said he hopes to fill the position within the next couple months.

In other business Wednesday, council approved the following items:

• A second reading to authorize a 2 percent increase in the pay scale for all positions.

• A second reading to authorize a line item transfer for building inspection training.

• A second reading to authorize a line item transfer for gas, oil and other miscellaneous expenses for the public safety department.

• A second reading to authorize buying replacement carpet and border for the second and third floors of City Hall.

• A second reading to authorize line item transfers for the garage for part-time salaries and office supplies.

• A second reading to authorize line item transfers for the sanitation department for maintenance vehicles and motor vehicle parts.

• A second reading to re-appropriate funds from the 2013-2014 budget to the 2014-2015 budget to buy a knuckleboom bed and excavator bucket.

• A second reading to authorize line item transfers for the street department for training, engineering and motor vehicle parts for the street department.

• A second reading to authorize line item transfers for the recreation department for overtime and employee paid benefits.

• A second reading to authorize an agreement and statement of work between the city of Lebanon and EnerCOC, Inc. for Demand Response Sales and Services.

• A second reading to authorize budget amendments for the Lebanon Municipal Airport to appropriate an additional $4,588 for a 5-percent local match for Row E T-Hangar design and construction services to match grant funds of $87,169.

• A second reading to amend the annual paving contract to complete manhole and utility valve adjustments for TDOT resurfacing of West Main Streets or any state routes within the city limits.

• A second reading to authorize the Local Government Corporation hardware maintenance agreement.

• A second reading to approve the Tennessee Law Enforcement Agency crash report reimbursement agreement with APPRISS, Inc.

• A second reading to approve a partnership with Wilson County to pave the portion of Callis Road inside the city limits.

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