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Priorities for upcoming Columbia budget include pay raises for city employees


In the State of the City address on Tuesday, Columbia City Manager John Glascock said one of the priorities for the upcoming fiscal year is an increase in pay for city employees.

"We are committed to the financial security of our employees," Glascock said. "In fiscal year 2022, I am proposing an increase across the board along with full implementation of the current pay-plan."

Glascock said yesterday, a priority for the city is to fund wage and benefit studies for city employees to ensure it's paying competitive wages and proper benefits. He said the city is fortunate to be in a good place financially after the pandemic.

"Financially, we are in a much better position than expected," Glascock said. "City reserves are above the restricted target and much higher than anticipated."

In the fiscal year budget for 2020, the city was able to give employees midpoint adjustments, time-in-class adjustments, and an across-the-board increases to salaries.

In the fiscal year 2021 adopted budget, Glascock did not recommend any pay adjustments for the beginning of the fiscal year, citing uncertainty in revenues due to COVID-19. He later said he was committed to reviewing the revenue and budget impacts for the second half of the 2021 fiscal year to see if changes in pay were possible for later.

The City of Columbia is considered to be a full-service city. This means it provides police, fire, street maintenance, parks & recreation, water, electric and sewer services for its residents.

Columbia's budget for fiscal year 2021 was around 470 million dollars according to the city's adopted budget document.

The City of Columbia budget work session will be held at 9 a.m. on Wednesday at City Hall. A link to livestream the event can be found here.

According to the city, the public is welcome to attend the meeting but seating will be limited and social distancing measures will be in place due to COVID-19.

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Meghan Drakas

Meghan joined ABC 17 News in January 2021.
The Penn State grad is from the Philadelphia suburbs where she interned with several local TV stations.


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