City staff opts for 3 percent cut in pay

Grand Junction city employees will take a 3 percent pay cut next year, as city officials continue to find ways to cope with declining sales-tax revenue.

City officials announced Friday that an employee committee made up of two representatives from every city department overwhelmingly agreed to absorb the 3 percent cut rather than a 1.9 percent reduction coupled with two unpaid holidays and two furlough days.

The salary cut for the city’s nearly 700 full- and part-time employees will take effect in January and should save the city $1.5 million. City officials said both alternatives would accomplish the same amount of savings.

The 3 percent reduction means a city employee normally making $50,000 a year would make $48,500 next year.

City spokeswoman Sam Rainguet said the committee representatives polled co-workers in their respective departments to get a sense of which option employees preferred. She said she didn’t know exactly why employees chose the bigger pay cut but suspected that taking a day off without pay may have presented a greater financial hardship for some people than spreading that loss of money throughout the year.

City Manager Laurie Kadrich appointed the 14-member committee two weeks ago to brainstorm ways to save money in the 2010 budget.


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