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Panel seeks raises for 115 CSB employees



Published: Fri, November 5, 2010 @ 12:10 a.m.

Recommendation comes 2 days after tax levy OK’d

By Peter H. Milliken

milliken@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Money for pay raises for union workers at the Mahoning County Children Services Board is included in the 2011 budget that will be presented to the board Tuesday.

The board and county commissioners will decide whether those raises will be granted.

The budget was recommended to the full board by the board’s finance committee Thursday, two days after voters approved by a 2-1 margin the board’s countywide .85-mill, five-year renewal levy. CSB’s election ad for the levy, which raises $1.75 million annually, urged voters to “Please vote YES to continue the care and protection of abused, neglected, and dependent children of Mahoning County.”

Had the levy failed, $1.8 million would have had to be cut from the budget, and layoffs would be occurring, said Daniel Thomas, fiscal officer.

Denise Stewart, executive director, said any discussion of raises would have been unlikely if the levy had failed.

For the raises to be granted to the employees, the board would first have to adopt the budget and then take a separate vote to grant the raises. County commissioners then would have to approve the raises.

CSB entered 2010 with a $7 million carryover from 2009, and projects revenues of $14 million this year, with expenditures of $15.95 million.

The 2011 budget anticipates a carry-in of $5.1 million from 2010, revenues of $13.17 million and expenses of $15.8 million.

The board has reduced expenses through recent retirements of long-time employees at the top of the pay scale and through closely monitoring the costs of child placements, including costly hospital placements, Thomas said.

The 3 percent cost-of-living raises, which had been scheduled to take effect Feb. 1 of each year, were included in a three-year contract between the board and the Communications Workers of America, which took effect Feb. 1, 2009.

The raises were never granted because the county commissioners approved the contract, but with a salary freeze, Stewart said. CSB employees haven’t had a pay raise since January 2008.

The 115-member union, which represents clerical and group home workers and social workers at the child-welfare agency, recently asked that the raises be revisited. The social workers average about $32,000 a year, Thomas said.

Stewart and Dr. Tom Gemma, finance committee chairman, said they’d like to be able to give the raises, which the union and management agreed upon.

“I support what the union and the board agreed to do,” Stewart said.

“We are looking to honor the contract that we signed with them in 2009,” Gemma said, noting that the employees agreed to a temporary pay freeze after the contract was signed.

Stewart also said the raises would help the agency remain competitive in employee recruitment and retention.

Social workers in Mahoning with a college degree start at $29,000 a year. Their Trumbull County colleagues start at $31,400, Stewart said.

Mahoning County Children Services gets half its funding from three countywide real- estate tax levies, including the one the voters renewed Tuesday, 40 percent from the federal government and 10 percent from the state.


Comments

1redcent(38 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

"Urged voters to please vote YES to continue the care and protection of abused, neglected, and dependent children of Mahoning County.”

Panel seeks pay raises for 115 CSB employees - two days later.

Gee ... that didn't take long at all ?!!

"Had the levy failed, $1.8 million would have had to be cut from the budget, and layoffs would be occurring."

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2UnionForever(1470 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Did you expect anything different? It was all about obscene pay increases for the CSB employees at the taxpayers expense.

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3author50(1121 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

If CSB employees and the politicians that allegedly oversee them give one thought about abused children I'd be very surprised. It was all about the MONEY for them. The suckers every election cycle are the voters of Mahoning County who believe that these non-profit agencies exist to serve them. The smart ones who vote NO, know better.

BTW: How much does the SPINDY get from advertsing from the CSB?

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4lee(544 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Once again the voter has been fooled

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5repeaters(180 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

But guys, "it's for the children" remember? Every time, these blood sucking entities prositute kids by throwing them in front of the bus and daring everyone and anyone to run them over....it's a natural...it works EVERY TIME. Lets replace public schools with private schools , let the parents pay a tuition....and this bull will end.

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6jwhitehawke(87 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

This valley must continue to give union employees pay increases! If taxpayers don't. who will?
The union made a contract for 3% per year with Childrens services. They will press for that money. Even if it means letting younger seniority employees go. That's why new businesses steer clear of the valley.
So we must feed the remaining unions or they will be gone.... like dinasaurs.

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7HaydenThomas(208 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Public employees are out of touch with reality. They think that COLA and step raises are the norm and have been used to getting them for decades.

Isn't it amazing that much of the waste in government is in organizations like mental retardation, children services, and the library. The voters just can't seem to say no to these wasters of money. These entities play on the collective conscience of the electorate.

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8Cowboyfan(105 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Not all Public employees!! We are union and we haven't had a raise in 3 years and sure as heck won't get one on the next contract. We have cut a huge amount of jobs and had furlough days.

All of you fools who fell for the threats and crying of the MRDD and Children services and the Library see what they were up to. Will you ever learn?

Too bad we can't get a job there so we can get cost of living increase. If Social Security says seniors don't need an increase why does anyone else.

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9palbubba(662 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I've posted it many times that the first thing that follows an approved levy are pay raises. For all of the suckers that voted for it I hope your landlord raises your rent to cover it. Any millage issue should only be voted on by property owners, then and only then will we get control over these issues.

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10AKAFR1(322 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Revenues are projected to excede expenses through the 2011 budget and this agency is concerned about granting raises. The continued deficit will only guarentee that the voters of Mahoning County will soon see a new Children's Services levy "for the children." Before you vote for another levy, take a tour of this multi-million dollar building and see what your tax dollars are paying for. I hope the county commissioners have the continued intelligence to deny these raises.

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11Cowboyfan(105 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Amen palbubba!!

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12sonnype(70 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

When will the voters ever learn.

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13Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

The raises were never granted because the county commissioners approved the contract, but with a salary freeze, Stewart said. CSB employees haven’t had a pay raise since January 2008.

The 115-member union, which represents clerical and group home workers and social workers at the child-welfare agency, recently asked that the raises be revisited. The social workers average about $32,000 a year, Thomas said.

They took a pay freeze in 2008 this plus they only make 32,000 with a collage degree . WOW what overpaid evil people .We should fire all of them and hire some of the know it all on this page. They may do a better job and for less. RIGHT!!!

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14piak(508 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Are you kidding? We pass this levy to protect the kids and it's going really to protect the union! What hutzpuh!!!!!

And the Commissioners are going to consider this? The consideration is, NO.

The governor of Indiana ran into union problems. He DECERTIFIED them.

And please, spare us the bleeding heart BS about "no raises for years". Have they no shame? I answered the question by using it.

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15AKAFR1(322 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Freelast..no one is saying that they are evil or overpaid, just out of touch with economic reality. Forecasted expenditures exceding revenues should be their first concern.

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16seminole(476 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Typical voter ingorance in the valley. It was all about the pay raises, nothing to do with the kids. Do you think these goofs care about the kids when they place them with parents that beat and abuse? Wake up!

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17Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Aka , The raises were already l passed . And they only make $32,000 a year . What part of that you do not understand . . Sure there would have been layoffs and less help for the kids but the ones left would still get the raise . That point seems to be over a lot the anti workers group on this page .
By the way I voted against the Levy , .

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18AKAFR1(322 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Freeatlast..what part of expenses exceding revenues do you not understand?? The point is about economic reality, something you don't understand.

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19Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Aka It did not exceed revenue THE LEVY PASSED ! They got the rise that was coming to them . And they all kept their jobs. Did you vote for the levy???
I did not !!!!

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20Thunderchicken(14 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Boo-hoo, we only make $32,000 with a college degree. Here is some free advice, do not go to college for a degree that is worth nearly nothing in the real world. There are so many degress out there today that when the diploma is hung on the wall, it is equivalent to toilet paper. Generally, lower paying jobs are ones that a large part of the population can do. What you want to do in life has to be decided before getting a degree. Is there a job market when I graduate? What will it pay? Where will have to locate to do it? It is one thing to do what you love, but please do not use this as an excuse when the pay is low.

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21personalresponsibility(11 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

ITS A RECESSION nobody deserves a raise, unless you make money for a company, these workers do not and deserve no raise this year. Sorry folks, should have been Ivy-league MBAs or i-bankers if you want a raise during a recession.

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22redvert(2007 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Thunderchicken, you stated it perfectly! If you are making 32K then that is what your degree most likely commands.

I always liked to describe degrees as either "working' or "social." The pay is commensurate.

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23Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

repeaters
But guys, "it's for the children" remember? Every time, these blood sucking entities prositute kids by throwing them in front of the bus and daring everyone and anyone to run them over....it's a natural...it works EVERY TIME. Lets replace public schools with private schools , let the parents pay a tuition....and this bull will end
MY POINT THANK YOU
But it must be for all
I did not vote for it but some here will not say what they did WHY????

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24jwhitehawke(87 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Kids are nothing but commodities with DHS. There are cases all over the country about how kids are kept drugged and in the dark while DHS uses then to keep their jobs..... TOO many jobs for their true purpose.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nnNyA3...

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25Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Kids are nothing but commodities
Wow that must be some home life at your home

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26SkyKing310B(253 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Do these people pay into PERS or does the county (meaning taxpayers) pay it all for them, too. If so, you got your raise! I think all unions representing public employees- including teachers, should be de-certified!

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27coupie(21 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I chose to make this living my career. Yes, I could have picked a degree that yielded more money, however I wanted to do something to help people. And that is exactly what I do every day whether you chose to believe that or not. It's easy to have a negative outlook when it comes to CSB because you never hear of the good things we do in the community, you only hear the bad. This is an imperfect system we are dealing with, but I do my best every day to balance respecting families and their rights while protecting children. For those who feel this is a desk job HA! Right! I am out there knocking on people's doors every day without a clue as to what is on the other side. Sometimes it's okay, other times it could be someone violent, someone unstable, someone addicted to drugs, someone with mental health issues, you just never know what you're getting. And it is a fact that in Ohio in recent years there have been caseworkes raped and even killed during home visits. You are exposed to unsafe conditions every day, and I'm not complaining because this is what I signed up for, just trying to make a few points. We work in collaboration with law enforcement, housing officials, teachers, and many other community professionals with the same goals in regards to helping these families and trying to protect the children. Hey, at least the cops get to carry guns and protect themselves. We aren't even allowed to carry mase, all we have is our social skills which doesn't really get you too far when you're knocking on someone's door and a pit bull comes to greet you. And if there is an emergency on one of my cases at 3 in the morning, guess who's waking up and going out to who knows what type of environment to address it? I really wish some of the people on here would do the research and find that that we are one of the lowest paid in Ohio in this field, which traditionally has a very high turnover rate because the average person just isn't cut out for what we do, but at Mahoning County the turnover rate is fairly low thanks to the way it is run. I'm sorry the economy is bad and people are losing their jobs. You should be proud our administration is very responsible with taxpayer dollars. And it's not like the levy was passed just for us to get a raise. Whether you like CSB or not, Ohio Law states there has to be a Children Services Board and the levy is mostly towards operating costs which are necessary. You have no clue how much per day some residential placements and hospitalizations cost for some of these children who need them. Not to mention the overflow of juvenile delinquents that get placed in our custody because JJC can't keep them. I don't expect everyone to understand what we really do, however please understand all we are asking here is for cost of living. And as a college educated professional whose job goes hand in hand with teachers, counselors, police officers, etc. and hasn't had a raise in three years, I really don't think that's so much to ask.

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28Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

And I Thank You .
I did not vote for the Levy. But it had to more about the types of cars I see in the parking lots.I feel those that make their living on taxpayer money should support their neighbours and country .

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29Wakeup722(37 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Freeatlast...you did not vote for the levy because of the cars in the parking lot????? Did you know that there are two other agencies that use that parking lot besides CSB.

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30Stan(9923 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Far too many in the private sector who deserved raises had undergone wage cuts or no raises at all for many years .

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31Freeatlast(1991 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Wakeup722 yes I do . But I have the right to vote as I see fit .

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