The city manager is the only city employee with an individual contract, according to Joe Weakland, Altoona's city manager.
The Third Class City Code allows for cities to employ city managers by contract. Such contracts may allow for severance compensation but not a guarantee of employment or "legal remedy based on specific performance," according to the code
Thus, the city manager serves at the pleasure of City Council.
Mirror photo by Gary M. Baranec
City Manager Joe Weakland, who has an office at City Hall, can accumulate up to 360 unused sick days and get half the value of those upon retirement, resignation or termination.
The contract dates to December 1998, when Weakland became full-fledged manager. It calls for a salary of $70,000, an annual performance evaluation and salary adjustments "determined in accordance with the performance of the manager."
Weakland now earns $96,250, including $840 in longevity pay.
The manager gets health insurance benefits equal to what other "confidential" employees receive; $50,000 worth of life insurance, disability insurance like that offered to all other city employees, participation in the city pension plan like other confidential employees, use of a city vehicle at any time - though primarily for city business, membership in municipal organizations, 15 sick days a year and five weeks' vacation a year
The manager can accumulate up to 360 unused sick days and get half the value of those upon retirement, resignation or termination.
That number is arguably higher now, due to subsequent changes in the non-uniform worker contracts over the years - given that the original number was based on the non-uniform worker contract in effect in 1998, Weakland said.
Up to 15 vacation days can be carried over from year to year.
If the city fires the manager, it must give him 30 days' notice and then pay him three months' aggregate salary, as called for in the Optional Third Class City Charter Law.
The manager can resign, provided he gives 30 days' notice.
The city must carry a $500,000 public officials' liability policy on the manager.
The manager has a right to a public hearing in connection with his position as an employee at will.
First line supervisors
The memorandum of understanding between the city and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees representing the city's first line supervisors is not a binding contract. However, it represents a good-faith effort to comply with Act 195, the Public Employee Relations Act, Section 704, which states that "public employers shall not be required to bargain with units of first level supervisors or their representatives but shall be required to meet and discuss ... matters deemed to be bargainable for other public employees covered by this act."
First line supervisors include two highway foremen, the electrical foreman, the Public Works Department engineer and chief inspector and the property maintenance supervisor in the codes department.
These employees across the board get a 2.5 percent increase for the first two years of the contract and a 3 percent increase for the third year.
Employees get $40-a-month longevity pay after five years; $50 a month after 10 years; $60 a month after 15 years and $70 a month after 20 years.
All employees who complete 10 years' service during the three-year term of the contract also get a one-time increase - less than $1 an hour - to base pay.
Employees get time and a half for anything more than 40 hours a week or can choose to take compensatory time off.
They are expected to work overtime when necessary. Those called in during unscheduled hours get a minimum three hours at time and a half.
Employees on standby get $25 during the week and $35 during weekends and holidays; those working the evening or night shifts get an extra 35 cents an hour.
They get 12 paid holidays but must work on the scheduled work days before and after a holiday to get paid for it. If they work on a holiday, they get a total of 2.5 times regular pay.
Employees get one week vacation after one year; two weeks after two years; three weeks after five years; four weeks after 10 years; and five weeks after 15 years. They become eligible for vacation after one year.
They get two personal days and earn up to 15 sick days per year. They can accumulate up to 250 unused sick days and receive an annual sick leave incentive for a percentage buyback of the days beyond 250 each year.
The city pays compensation for unused sick days upon retirement - 40 percent for days 51-100; 50 percent for days 101-175 and 60 percent for days 176 to 250.
Employees get the Highmark Qualified High Deductible Health Plan or its equivalent, with a health savings account, with a $1,250 deductible for individuals and a $2,500 deductible for families. The city pays 80 percent of the deductible the first year, 75 percent the second year and 50 percent the third year of the contract.
Employees contribute 7.5 percent of the premium cost the first year, 8.5 percent the second year and 10 percent the third year - up to a maximum $165 per month.
Dependent spouses eligible for coverage through their own employers can't piggyback on city coverage.
Employees also get vision coverage. Those who waive health coverage get 40 percent of the city's cost.
They get $30,000 worth of life insurance coverage and contribute 5 percent of their gross wages to the non-uniformed workers pension plan.
Employees who can't perform their regular duties may be assigned to modified duty.
Members of the group must join the union or have their "fair share" payment - tantamount to member dues - deducted by the city.
The city will lay off and recall employees based on the needs of the city and skills of the employee - as well as seniority and other relevant factors.
Employees must live in the city except with permission of the city manager, and only for good cause.
The city may not discipline, suspend or discharge an employee without just cause. The discipline protocol goes from verbal warning for a first offense, written warning for a second offense, one-day suspension for a third offense, three-day suspension for a fourth offense and discharge for a fifth offense. The city can skip steps in this protocol..