Williamstown Council OKs additional pay hikes

WILLIAMSTOWN – City council Tuesday night approved pay raises for city employees. Council had already approved raises that included a 5 percent increase for all city employees with an additional $2 on the hour raise for police officers. Discussion on additional raises was for city employees set to receive a raise of 50 cents an hour.

Councilman Marty Seufer said the city would be glad to support the raises if the funds were available.

Tuesday evening, Seufer said the money is available to give those employees the additional 50 cents an hour raise without any adverse effect on the city fund.

“The last thing we want is any kind of increase because of that to the citizens,” he said.

Seufer recommended if there is any imbalance in the general fund that it be taken out of the unassigned fund balance for those receiving the raises.

Council approved the motion and approved the additional raises.

In other business, council discussed a proposed ordinance for a non-jailable offense to be cited through municipal court rather than Wood County Magistrate Court at an officer’s discretion.

City Attorney C. Blaine Myers said he wasn’t sure if the city could do that and he would have to look into the matter before giving a recommendation to council.

“You can pass an ordinance that, for example, tracks the state code on cell phone usage.

“As long as we don’t provide for possible incarceration, we do have the authority to do that,” he said. “What this suggests is we do this broad catch-all that says anything the state says is an offense that doesn’t involve jail time can be cited in municipal court.

“I am not sure we can envelop everything in a general ordinance like that. It is a creative idea, but I will look at it further.”

The city has ordinances stating it is an officer’s choice to cite in municipal court or magistrate court.

“I am not sure we can catch everything we don’t have an ordinance for in this manner,” Myers said. “Maybe someone else has done it. I don’t know.”

Council agreed to let Myers look at it in more detail.

Residents discussed parking concerns along 10th Street around Crystal Avenue with residents having trouble finding places to park and others taking issue where some do park.