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Manor nurses rise up for raises
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The Lafayette Manor Committee meeting was moved to a larger area to accommodate the 15 to 20 nurses, dietary, housekeeping employees that were in attendance. The meeting started late as the committee was waiting for members so they could have a quorum. Larry Ludlum, chair, called the meeting to order at 5:22 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2016.
    The agenda was amended to move the personnel/payroll up in the lineup to address the concerns of the employees that were present.
    Judy Arn, director of nursing at the manor, distributed a handout and spoke first. “The RN’s and LPN’s at the Manor have 1,107 hours of overtime since Jan. 1, 2016. That equates to $33,099 of overtime paid out to-date. If the RN’s received a $3 raise and the LPN’s received a $1.50 that would show $9,693 in overtime savings”, said Arn.
    There are seven RN’s at the Manor, their base pay is $22.79 per hour. We have to have a better incentive to bring them in and keep them here. So Arn is requesting a $3 raise for RN’s and $1.50 for LPN’s. There are six LPN’s at the Manor.
    The conclusion to be drawn is that if the Manor hired additional RN’s and LPN’s there would be less or no overtime. Plus, the Manor could raise their census from 55 and each additional resident represents $50,000 more revenue per year. There are eleven persons on the waiting list to get admittance to the Manor.
    Arn said, “I’m very proud of our staff, they are kind and helpful and our top priority is the care of our residents and the good care we give.”
    Others stated – we need staff, give us staff. In order to maintain staff we need equitable pay. The last pay raise for the nurses, has been five years.
    Julie Chikowski, Manor and Hospital Administrator said, “When we got shot down on raises last meeting, I went to Judy (Arn) and told her to get her nurses together and bring them to the committee. If you want your voices to be heard, come to the committee and bring information showing you need a raise.”
    Katie Sedbrook, Dietary Manager, spoke to the committee about inconsistencies in pay.
    Ludlum said, “It’s probably in the best interest of this board to take recommendations from administration. They are paid to do this job and make comparisons.”
     Chikowski said, “I am recommending the RN’s receive a $2 raise and the LPN’s get a $1.50 raise. However, I would like for you to take in consideration attendance and performance. I think now is the time the county should think about pay for performance.”
    Gerald Heiman, committee and county board member, made a motion to give the RN’s a $2 raise, LPN’s $1.50 and the rest of the help a $1 raise, tied to performance. This will be a bump to starting wages or an additional bump to wherever current employee’s pay is at, in the pay rate scale. The motion was seconded by John Perkins, committee and county board member. The motion passed unanimously.
    It should be noted that committee member, Tony Ruesga, had an excused absence from this meeting.
    In other business.
    Financial Report – as presented by Nicola Mauer, manor finance director. Mauer pointed out that the Manor is ahead of levy budget usage through October. The levy usage for October was at $8,164, leaving $53,334 for the rest of the year. Mauer said, “This is good news, it’s on the right side of the equation.”
    Net revenues year-to-date through October are $3,707,981, which is behind the budget by $125,889. But when you look at total expense, they are also behind budget, by $129,411. So the year-to-date income is $3,523 on the plus side. Mauer said, “The picture is looking very healthy at the Manor.”
    Vicki Whitford asked to be removed from the committee. Ludlum said he would speak with county board chairman to appoint someone to replace her.
    Total expenses for October were $368,274.
    Chikowski pointed out to the committee a change has been made for the head cook position. Mary Foley is now the head cook, and since she has taken over, we have saved a lot of money on food. She’s very efficient with planning her meals with no waste. “Dietary is $33,000 under budget and her meals are great.” Chikowski said.
    Overtime for October was $13,489.