Council studying raises for specific employees

By RICHARD DUKE

LOG CABIN STAFF WRITER

Specific positions within the city of Conway and what they are paid will be looked at by an independent group who was last used in 2009.

The Conway City Council met in special committee to discuss various pay scales and pay midpoints for several specific department positions as well as the broader group of administrative assistants. The result of that study could mean a different pay scale and essentially a raise for several specific city employees.

The council also informally approved a request by City Attorney Mike Murphy to advertise for a City Deputy Prosecutor with a salary of $72,500. A formal resolution will be considered at the next city council meeting.

Murphy expressed concern that the current pay scale of $63,500 is not consistent with other jobs in comparable areas. In addition, deputy prosecutors for Faulkner County make more on average than what was initially offered.

“This amount would be for extremely strong candidates,” Murphy said. “What we don’t want this place to turn into is a training ground where we pay to train someone at the lower pay, and then they turn around and head two blocks down the road for more money.”

Murphy pointed out that the deputy position will have to “put on many hats” in both criminal and civil arenas.

The council will pay for the new study, which receives input from department heads about each department position, including job descriptions, levels of experience, mental and physical requirements, etc.

The most recent comprehensive study completed in 2009 cost approximately $12,000, but this one will be less by focusing on fewer positions. The purpose, according to Conway Mayor Tab Townsell, is to provide objective analysis in job rankings, especially when they are compared to market value.

“What we do not need to be doing is cherry picking ourselves,” Townsell said. “This should provide a fair assessment of each person’s duties.”

If the council is able to provide raises for certain positions based on the study, they would be retroactive to Jan. 1, 2013.

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