Disagreement still reigns just ahead of Chattanooga city budget vote

Disagreement still reigns just ahead of Chattanooga city budget vote

June 19th, 2012 by Cliff Hightower in Local - Breaking News

The Chattanooga City Council chamber.

Photo by Doug Strickland/Times Free Press.

This morning, the Chattanooga City Council found itself trying to figure out how to best handle a proposed $3 million for employee salary increases.

In his new budget, Mayor Ron Littlefield has proposed a 3 percent increase for all non-sworn employees, along with longevity pay. He offered $1.3 million for the police career ladder program.

But the council has been torn over how the money would be distributed. Some council members this morning said they would support a 3 percent increase for civilians and police career ladder pay, but no longevity pay.

Other council members supported a 1.5 percent raise for all city employees, including fire and police, along with longevity pay.

The council will vote on the 2012-2013 fiscal year budget tonight on first reading. The second and final reading is set for next Tuesday.

Councilwoman Carol Berz, chairwoman of the Budget and Finance Committee, said the council could decide either by today or over the next week on how to distribute the salary increases.

For more information, read tomorrow's edition of the Times Free Press.