Crown Point offering buyouts to city workers to reduce costs
By Carrie Napoleon Post-Tribune correspondent December 9, 2012 8:00PM
Updated: December 9, 2012 10:37PM
CROWN POINT — Any city employee with five consecutive years’ service is eligible for the most recent round of early separation incentives.
Last week the Crown Point City Council unanimously approved on first and second readings an early separation incentive plan ordinance designed to trim the ranks through attrition. Employees have until Dec. 15 to sign up for the program.
Keith Stevens, the city’s chief of staff, said it is the same program Mayor David Uran created in 2010. Uran took up the cause again this year to continue to find ways to reduce the city’s costs and keep its finances in order from year to year. He said the city council has been supportive of the efforts as well.
“They share that vision to take every dollar and stretch it as far as we can,” Stevens said.
Participants in the program will receive a one-time payout of $300 per year of service if they use the Retiree’s Insurance Program, according to the ordinance. Participants who do not use the insurance will receive a one-time payout of $600 per year of service.
About six people took advantage of the program in 2010. Less than five employees are expected to participate this time around.
Any public safety employee who elects to participate will be immediately replaced. Efforts will be made to absorb the work of other vacated positions by existing employees to create the savings.
“There’s no set formula to (how much we will save), but we will be saving money through attrition,” Stevens said.
Stevens said when the city first offered the employee separation incentive the money saved enabled officials to hire more emergency service workers in the police and fire department. Some of the money saved will be added to the city’s self-insurance pool.
No other decisions have been made on what will be done with any remaining potential savings.