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Montgomery City Council set to vote on new budget Tuesday

Published: Sep. 27, 2021 at 10:53 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - On Tuesday, the Montgomery City Council will decide on its financial future when they vote on the new fiscal budget for 2022.

That budget includes new departments and pay raises across the board for all city employees.

Some city sanitation workers say a pay raise is long overdue from the city. They say they’ve worked for little pay for years and have had to take on second jobs just to pay for their bills.

“I want to be able to go to a restaurant with my kids, my wife and explain that if they ask for something to eat I don’t have to look at how much it costs,” city sanitation worker Dirac Chapell said at a protest outside City Hall Sunday.

A 19% pay raise has been promised to them by Mayor Steven Reed in the proposed fiscal year 2022 budget, but some council members are concerned about how those raises will impact the city past 2022 and don’t want the raises to cause the city to have to dip into other funds to remain financially stable.

Some sanitation workers say if they don’t get their raise they will be forced to take action.

“If you do not give them their increase you will have to go find more workers because the 200 workers that you do have is going to make sacrifices by leaving the city of Montgomery,” local activist Ja’mel Brown said at Sunday’s protest.

District 3 Councilwoman Marche Johnson says the pay raise is the right thing to do for city employees.

“Rent is going up, mortgages are increasing, so we have to ensure that we do something for our city employees, and that’s a pay raise,” Johnson said.

If a new budget is not decided on by Oct. 1 then the current budget will remain in place.

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