"The job market out there is not great — I am personally experiencing it," said Matheny, who is currently unemployed besides his council position. "All of city’s employees would love a raise and our constituents may say 'Why are you giving them a raise? They should be happy to have a job.' There is a lot of education that needs to go into this."
The city is below the target range around the 50th percentile for five benefit categories, including wellness incentives, disability benefits, paid holidays, education assistance and retiree medical over 65. The city is one paid holiday behind its target range.
Abuzuaiter said the proposed increase in wellness incentives could save the city money on health insurance in the long run, which a presenter confirmed but said it would take approximately three years before the savings were visible.
The city is within its target range in five other benefit categories and above in three: dental, life and medical insurance. In general, the city's compensation rate was closer to the goals than in benefit categories, with 10 general categories falling within the range while two are above and three are below. Longevity, probationary increases and take-home patrol cars were all below the target compensation range.