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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Fed Ed and City Council Reach Budget Deal

PRESS RELEASE REGARDING AGREEMENT BETWEEN 
THE MAYOR OF THE CITY OF ALLENTOWN AND
ALLENTOWN CITY COUNCIL RELATIVE TO BUDGET FOR 2017 FISCAL YEAR
On Thursday, December 22, 2016, with the able and effective assistance of the Honorable Edward M. Cahn and the City Solicitor, the Mayor and City Council (by its elected President and Vice President) agreed to the following:
1. To work in a cohesive and constructive manner, going forward, to accomplish the best budgetary outcome for 2017 and future years; 
2. To refrain from any public comment which would tend to disparage the Mayor or any member of Council, including all of their respective family members, excepting constructive criticism or respectful disagreement; it being understood that this non-disparagement clause includes all language (spoken or written) which is intended, or would reasonably be expected, to materially harm the other, or would harm the reputation of any of the foregoing persons, or which could reasonably be expected to lead to unwanted or unfavorable publicity to any of the foregoing persons.
3. Council’s amendments to the budget for cuts to premium pay (Account 6) shall be reduced to 5% (from 10%).
4. The salaries of the Police Chief, Fire Chief and Interim Director of Public Works shall be increased 5% over their 2016 salaries.
5. Salary ranges shall be restored to the back of the budget book in accordance with prior practice.
6. Council will restore all funding to Account 46 of the Budget, as proposed in the Mayor’s Budget of November 2, 2016.
7. The Department of Economic and Community Development shall be reorganized and reconstituted as promptly as possible, with the now-vacant position of Director of the Department filled in the following manner:
a. An Economic Development Committee (“ED Committee”) shall be formed consisting of three members of Council (two to be selected by Council and one to be selected by the Mayor), one representative of the Administration, and one representative of the Human Resources Department;
b. The goal of the ED Committee shall be to conduct a search for candidates for the position of Director;
c. The ED Committee will provide the Mayor with no fewer than 3 potential names;
d. The Mayor will select and appoint a new Director from the aforementioned list of names, to submit to Council for confirmation. 
e. The salaries of the Director of Economic Development and Operations Manager will be restored to the salary ranges set forth in the proposed Budget of November 2, 2016.
f. Upon completion of the above process, the Department of Economic and Community Development, under the leadership of its new Director (whether interim or permanent) shall be reorganized to maximize the economic growth potential of the City of Allentown, and to further the existing and future goals and projects of the City of Allentown.
8. Council will conduct a meeting to consider Oscar Montoya for the position of Managing Director, within the month of January 2017.
9. In the event Mr. Montoya is not hired, a Managing Director Committee (“MD Committee”) shall be formed consisting of three members of Council (two to be selected by Council and one to be selected by the Mayor; however, the members of the MD Committee shall not be the same as the members of the ED Committee), one representative of the Administration, one representative of the Human Resources Department;
a. The goal of the MD Committee shall be to conduct a search for candidates for the position of Managing Director, and, within 60 days from the date of this Agreement, will furnish to the Mayor a list of no fewer than 2 and no more than 5 names of individuals the MD Committee believes to be qualified for the Managing Director position; and
b. The Mayor will appoint an individual from the foregoing list, unless the Mayor, in his sole and unfettered discretion, determines that none of the individuals on the aforementioned list are suitable for the position, in which case, the Mayor shall submit a counterproposal of names to the MD Committee for input and consideration.
10. Council recognizes and agrees that it is the Mayor’s sole right to hire or appoint City employees (other than Cabinet positions).
11. One member of Council (on a rotating basis) mayattend the monthly meetings of the Administration with all Bureau Managers.  
12. At or before the reorganization meeting on January 4, 2017, Council will take action by way of ordinance to make fund transfers as are necessary to balance the 2017 Budget, and implement the terms of this Agreement.

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

God Bless Mayor Pawlowski!

Robert Trotner said...

Excellent compromise. City Council is now firmly in the driver's seat, and racketeer Fed Ed is just an observer at this point.

Anonymous said...

City Council caved. Fed Ed had no standing. They should've called his bluff and let him make a jackass out of himself. Public gets screwed again.

Rich Fegley said...

This looks like City Council caved. Who really knows what is going on with Allentown's finances? Council will admit that they don't know because they are only part-time City employees. They put all of their trust in the Mayor, the Finance Director, the Controller and PFM. They will plead ignorance or just remain silent.

Waiting for the Feds to clean up Allentown.

Anonymous said...

Once again The City Council talks tough but knows not to buck the Mayor

Bernie O'Hare said...

7:33, Please do us all a favor and write to the law school from which you supposed graduated and demand your money back. The Mayor most certainly has standing in any legal dispute over his own proposed budget.

Anonymous said...

Read section 2

Bernie O'Hare said...

I have. That is an attempt to muzzle criticism and is legally unenforceable. The First Amendment can't be contracted away.

Anonymous said...

Can #2 be rewritten in English, please?

Bernie O'Hare said...

It does not matter bc it is unenforceable.

Anonymous said...

You're joking, right?

Bernie O'Hare said...

No. )ara. 2 has no meaning. I don't know how many times I have to say it.

Robert Trotner said...

I emphasize with your concern, Rich, but I also feel confident that the budget RTK's that we'll file in January will expose all racketeer Fed Ed's budgetary sins over the years. Also, Council essentially decides who becomes Managing Director and Director of Economic and Community Development and will take over the running of the department from the administration. Finally, they will have a reoresentarive Fed Ed's cabinet meetings. Perhaps all this will amount to nothing, but I think we will look upon this as the day council wrested control of the city from an emasculated mayor. I think what they conceded in the deal is far overshadowed by what they won.

Anonymous said...

The Mayor has not been charged with any crimes.

Anonymous said...

The Mayor is an innocent man.
Jesus is his only judge or jury.

Anonymous said...

This is not a win by city council! It is a cave-in by the former supporters of "Fed Ed". Plain and simple this does not address the Michael Walker hiring. Nowhere in this agreement does it name him or fund his position. The MC reports that the Director of Economic and Community position and the operations manager will be funded. I didn't see the re-funding of Walker's position in your draft. Secondly, he, [the rotund one], will name a member of the administration, human resources and one member of council [Affa] to the ED and MD committees. This is a 3-2 majority for the "rotund one". Third, he keeps all his money for his personal contracts and five percent for premium pay. Fourth, the police chief, who receives the same dollar amount [3%] of the highest paid bargaining unit member, receives an extra 2% above that. This is a joke! Once again these gutless [POS] who signed this budget are a credit to their profession: Useless rubber stampers!

Rich Fegley said...

Council members have publicly asked me not to mention that, "their family members should be ashamed of them for making the decisions that they have made".

#2 is like your parents telling you to keep family business private, not to be discussed in public.

The Mayor and Council make up their own rules without public input or concern.

Or maybe this is one of their "traditions"?

Anonymous said...

Maybe this way none of the Council members kids who got city jobs are mentioned.
That's handy.