By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Police take less
Placeholder Image
Because of the city's financial problems, Ceres police officers have followed in the steps of firefighters and have agreed to take a 10 percent cut in pay.

Contracts were approved for the Police Officers Association (POA) and the Miscellaneous Employees Bargaining Unit at the June 28 Ceres City Council meeting.

Both groups offered concessions in the hopes that no employee will have to be issued layoff notices. There are no guarantees against layoffs, however, said Mike Borges, the Deputy Police Chief who is the interim Human Resources manager.

Police officers have reached the 10 percent reduction by forgoing the cash-out of holiday time and paying 26 percent of their employee contribution for retirement ordinarily paid by the city. The action saves the city an estimated $516,775.

The Miscellaneous Bargaining Unit, which covers street, water, sewer plant workers, mechanics, police dispatchers, clerks, some planners, engineers and community service officers, has agreed to give up pay for 12 holidays and will have 13 unpaid furlough days. The new contract saves the city $498,235 per year.

The total savings between the two remaining groups save the city $1.015 million.

Similar agreements were inked in June for Ceres firefighters, police and fire managers and other city supervisors.

Borges said that the groups "did not relish in the idea but were willing to work with the city to achieve its goal of less expenditures."

Also last week, Glenn Gebhardt, who is now officially the director of public works and city engineer, and the city reached an agreement on his salary. Gebhardt came to the city in January 2009 as city engineer. After the elimination the Community Development Director - filled by Ken Craig - Gebhardt took over building and planning functions while serving as city engineer. Public Works Director Phil Scott left the city in February, leaving a vacancy. The council last week appointed Gebhardt to fill both position. City manager Brad Kilger said Gebhardt has "performed very competently under very difficult circumstances."

Gebhardt's new starting salary is $10,814 per month, however, he is taking a 10 percent cut like all the labor groups, taking his salary down to $9,809 monthly.