Two members of Mayor Jim Lienhoop’s administration would receive significant pay-increases under a plan approved Monday night by the Columbus City Council.
Prior to taking office, Mayor Lienhoop announced a restructuring of positions at City Hall. This restructuring would cut in half the number of department heads and city employees who report directly to the Mayor. The restructuring also combined some positions and added additional responsibilities for those who are appointed to them. Among them was the position of Director of Administration and Community Development, which is held by Mary Ferdon. The other was Executive Director of Public Works/City Engineer, which is held by Dave Hayward.
Ferdon explained to the council the administration’s plan to do a review of all city positions and their compensation packages. She explained that the last time the salary ordinance was updated was several years ago. Ferdon said that the council needed to approve the updates for these two positions to solidify their responsibilities. She also noted that the position of Director of Administration and Community Development was already in place under the previous administration. She said this measure would essentially formalize it. Under the updated salary ordinance, which requires a second reading, the position of Director of Administration and Community Development would see her maximum annual salary increased from $73,580 to $82,600. The Executive Director of Public Works/City Engineer position would see his maximum increased from $83,624 to $92,000 per year. Ferdon added that a full review of city positions is expected in the coming months.
City Councilman Frank Miller was opposed to the ordinance, at least for the time being. Miller said that he understands what Mayor Lienhoop wants to accomplish, but he would prefer waiting until a review of all city positions have been completed. The measure was approved, on first reading, on a vote of six-to-one.
A second reading of the salary ordinance is expected at the next city council meeting scheduled for Jan. 19th.