By Barnett Wright
The Birmingham Times
Birmingham Mayor Randall L. Woodfin on Friday announced that he will recommend an immediate 5 percent pay raise for city employees and another 5 percent in merit raises for the fiscal year which begins July 1.
The proposed 10 percent in pay raises would be coupled with a commitment for the city to also cover the cost of a 9 percent increase in health insurance benefits for employees.
The initial 5 percent pay raise will be presented to a city council Committee of the Whole on Monday and could be considered as soon as Tuesday by the full council.
“We appreciate your sacrifice and commitment to serving our residents,” Woodfin said on a tele-townhall with public safety employees on Friday. “Even when the global pandemic raged across our city, you continued to make sure that our residents were protected, supported and experienced uninterrupted service.”
The move comes after Woodfin and multiple City Councilors on Tuesday promised raises to police officers, 20 of whom came to the Council meeting to speak about higher pay.
Before any of them were invited to the podium, Woodfin spoke to their concerns, saying, “Collectively, they’re saying, ‘we deserve more’ and I want you all to know I agree with you all,” the mayor said.
On Friday, the mayor held three tele-town hall meetings with workers, answering questions from employees with Birmingham Police, Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service and the Department of Public Works.
If the pay raises are approved by the council on Tuesday, it would then go to the next scheduled meeting of the Jefferson County Personnel Board for approval. The recommended 5 percent pay merit raises and longevity pay will be included in the mayor’s proposed operating budget presented to the council for the new fiscal year which begins July 1.
Updated at 11:11 a.m. on 3/26/2022 to correct the title