In a Personnel Meeting taking place earlier today, revisions were made to job descriptions changing most managerials, director, and superintendent positions to salaried positions as well as changing the title and responsibilities of Engineering Assistant to Assistant Public Works Director. All items in the meeting were motioned through unanimously.
Upon recommendation by Acting City Clerk Michael Fluhr, one of the items on the agenda would change most director and superintendent positions in the city into a salaried position. Fluhr stated that the change will “provide clarification in accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act for Supervisory and Higher Management positions,” according to a memo.
To provide some context, there are some positions in the city, like the superintendents, managers, and directors of various departments, that the FLSA classifies as exempt employees. The FLSA classifies an exempt job as one that falls into the categories Professional, Administrative, or Executive.
Being classified as exempt means that the position doesn’t qualify for minimum wage or overtime pay because they are to be paid salary as opposed to by the hour.
This change to the verbage acknowledges these positions classification as exempt by the FLSA, and makes the job descriptions for these positions better adhere to their standards. This change was unanimously approved.
The positions that will receive this revision to their job description include the Facilities Director, Downtown Development Director, Building Official, Human Resources Manager, Streets and Drainage Manager, Airport Manager, Water Distribution/Wastewater Collection Manager, Water Production Superintendent, Water Distribution/Wastewater Collection Superintendent, and Wastewater Superintendent.
Another item of note from the meeting was the change of title and job description for the position of Engineer Assistant to Assistant Public Works Director.
This change was a result of the recent City Council decision not to hire the proposed candidate for the Public Works Director position. The position has been left vacant for over five years now, so this is another avenue being taken to try and get someone to tend to the responsibilities of that position.
One of the main concerns of the Council when deciding whether or not to hire the candidate was the lack of direct public works experience. Multiple councilmen mentioned they would prefer if there was an assistant position to hire him into instead, a position with slightly reduced responsibilities that would allow city employees time to gauge if they would be a good fit for the Director position.
“I was in that meeting, and some of the comments were that this job position didn’t really fit an assistantship, so this is to fix that,” said Brent Cooley, Chairman of the Personnel Committee.
The closest thing the city had to an assistant public works direct was an engineer assistant, but the job did not have the supervisory authority the position would need to be fully effective.
The proposed change would not create an assistant public works position, but would instead change the title of the position to Assistant Public Works Director and update the responsibilities to include some supervisory roles.
“I think this is facilitating the requests of the City Councilmen. An assistant position to hire someone in instead of hiring them directly,” said Cooley.
After the decision to make the proposed changes was unanimously voted upon, the last change the committee had to vote on was changing other job descriptions to report to the Assistant Public Works Director. This would allow the position to take care of responsibilities in the absence of a Public Works Director. This change was unanimously approved.
The notable changes in the job description from Assistant Engineer to Assistant Public Works Director can be read below:
Meets with members of the public to discuss questions related to utility operations.
Assists in developing general policies for expanding, operating, replacing, and maintaining facilities.
Carries out the duties of the Public Works Director in his absence.
Added Supervisory responsibilities:
Under the direction of the Public Works Director, the Assistant Public Works Director will supervise all areas/employees within the Department of Public works and the Airport Manager.
Changed education and/or experience requirements:
Changed from highschool diploma and two years advanced education or specialized training to requiring a college degree.
Changed the requirement of five years experience in drafting, engineering, construction, or related fields to three to four years of work experience, preferably in the area of Public Works.
Added a requirement of minimum two years supervisory experience.