Over the past few weeks, the city council and staff have received a lot of questions about including salary increases — an average of 2.5 percent — in next year’s proposed budget during the current economic climate. This was done for a number of reasons for our employees; specifically, those at the lower end of the pay scale. Let me explain further.
The City of College Station is a service organization, and so our employees really are the greatest asset. If the increases are approved, it will have been two years since College Station employees received a merit raise, with the exception of a small number of police officers. During this same time, other area public entities, including Brazos County, College Station ISD, the City of Bryan, and Bryan ISD, had salary increases. The measure also is meant to help offset the cost of rising health insurance paid by our employees.
First, it’s important to note the proposed increases are not automatic; rather, they will be tied to performance evaluations. Also, they would be set up in a way to give the employees making the least in our organization a chance at the highest percentage increases. So, top management would not receive an increase, mid-range employees could receive a small one, and those at the lower end of the salary scale would be eligible for the largest increases.
As city manager, I made a pledge to our employees to continue doing all that I can to provide them the best work environment possible. They work very hard to provide service to our citizens, and the proposed salary increases are a way to provide for those who make College Station a great place to live, work and play.