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No pay for city employees

By Charles Sercombe

As of Thursday, the day The Review went to press, word is that the city won’t make the April 10 city employee payroll.

That goes for firefighters and police officers as well.

Acting City Manager Kyle Tertzag said that there is a little over $34,000 in the city coffers, and he needs at least $300,000 to meet payroll.

Tertzag said he expects all city employees to report to work as usual, saying that sooner or later they will be paid.

The police officers’ union pledged their cooperation on their Facebook page, saying:

“In light of the news today of our impending payless paydays, the men and women of the Hamtramck Fraternal Order of Police would like to reassure our residents, businesses and visitors that we will still be on the job. We are committed to protecting the people in our great city through the good and the bad.”

City officials have been warning employees about payless paydays for months now. The city is currently in deficit spending, and by next June it’s expected the city will be $3.5 million in the hole.

Unless a big change comes down the pike.

And that change could likely be in the form of a state-appointed emergency manager. State officials are currently reviewing the city’s financial situation.

Tertzag said he expects an emergency manager within weeks.

One of the first things that’s likely to take place is restructuring the Fire Department. Just how that will be done is not clear yet.

4 Responses to No pay for city employees

  1. Bill

    April 8, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Everyone wants these public safety services for free.. What do people expect? To have every FF/PO be perpetually 30 years old and in the prime of life? Even if you get hired on at 18, after 25 years of back breaking work your body has had it.. People don’t live forever.. Most can’t get on departments until after completing 2 or 4 years of college, that puts you at nearly 50 when your 25 is up.. Most aren’t chasing bad guys or dragging hoses into burning buildings much past that..

    So the question is, how do you seriously except to lure that 1-5% (arguable) of the population that is truly capable of doing emergency public service into the field? Its not going to be by saying “we will break your body for 25 years, but then your done because you are too old to be doing this stuff physically anymore.. then here’s your under mature 401k which won’t provide for your needs anymore.. and no health benefits.. Thanks for your services and good luck”.. Not much room in the market for 50+ ex public servant, let alone 1000s every year nation wide.. People gotta live

    Lets not forget most emergency services are dual rolled too (FF/medic, FF/PD, PD/medic).. Those require schooling before even getting hired by a department.. PD-6 months to 4 years (you would be surprised how many officers have bachelors) FF-6 months to 4 years, Medic-2 years minimum.. Don’t forget nobody comes right out of the academy a seasoned veteran either.. It takes years of experience, real world experience, beyond formal training.. I ask you, why would anyone be lured into a career like this? Would you? And no correcting spelling/grammar or arguing nonsense tid-bits.. Stick with the heart of the issue please..

  2. Dan

    April 10, 2013 at 8:35 am

    Couldn’t have said it better myself Bill!

  3. Curious

    April 15, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    I think what everyone seems to be forgetting here is that the retirees funded their pensions. Which menans, their checks were deducted on a weekly basis for the amount set by the City/Pension Company that was to be invested into the MERS pension system, which is basically an annuity. The employees/retires are not the ones who establish the amount of funds to be deducted from their paychecks nor have any say-so in how the funds are invested, the City/Pension Company does all of this.

    Additionally and most importantly, firemen and police do not contribute to Social Security so when they are of age to retire, what exactly do the taxpayers except live to live off of since they are ineligible for Social Security?

    Let’s put it to you this way, “How would you feel if you were 62 years old and contributed to Social Security all of your life and was ready to retire, however was then told “sorry, but even though you paid into Social Security all of these years, you cannot collect Social Security or have any medical coverage through Medicare”.

    Or, even better, say you were retired and unable to obtain employment due to age/illness and were collecting the Social Security monthly amount that you earned after contributing all of your life/receiving Medicare Heatlhcare benefits and then was told “oh, sorry, we need to revoke Social Security and all Medicare Healthcar benefits”.

    I don’t think the taxpayers realize these pensions were self funded and these employees/retirees are ineligible for Social Security/Medicare (unless of course rare but have worked another job before/after their careers and have earned enough work credits to do so.)

  4. Curious

    April 15, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    I think what everyone seems to be forgetting here is that the retirees funded their pensions. Which menans, their checks were deducted on a weekly basis for the amount set by the City/Pension Company that was to be invested into the MERS pension system, which is basically an annuity. The employees/retires are not the ones who establish the amount of funds to be deducted from their paychecks nor have any say-so in how the funds are invested, the City/Pension Company does all of this.

    Additionally and most importantly, firemen and police do not contribute to Social Security so when they are of age to retire, what exactly do the taxpayers except live to live off of since they are ineligible for Social Security?

    Let’s put it to you this way, “How would you feel if you were 62 years old and contributed to Social Security all of your life and was ready to retire, however was then told “sorry, but even though you paid into Social Security all of these years, you cannot collect Social Security or have any medical coverage through Medicare”.

    Or, even better, say you were retired and unable to obtain employment due to age/illness and were collecting the Social Security monthly amount that you earned after contributing all of your life/receiving Medicare Heatlhcare benefits and then was told “oh, sorry, we need to revoke Social Security and all Medicare Healthcar benefits”.

    I don’t think the taxpayers realize these pensions were self funded and these employees/retirees are ineligible for Social Security/Medicare (unless of course rare but have worked another job before/after their careers and have earned enough work credits to do so.)

    Please keep in mind the sacrifices these employees/retirees make/have made by putting their life on the line every single day that they put their uniforms on.

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