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DailyTidings.com
  • Increases in fees up to council

    5 percent transportation fee, a 10 percent storm drain fee among items before the city
  • The Ashland City Council will consider whether to approve a 5 percent transportation utility fee increase and a 10 percent storm drain system increase during a Tuesday meeting.
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  • The Ashland City Council will consider whether to approve a 5 percent transportation utility fee increase and a 10 percent storm drain system increase during a Tuesday meeting.
    The council meets at 7 p.m. in the Ashland Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main St.
    A 5 percent transportation utility fee increase would cost a household living in a single-family house another $0.40 per month, according to a memo to councilors from Ashland Finance and Administrative Services Director Lee Tunberg.
    A 10 percent storm drain system fee increase would cost that household another $0.42 each month, the memo said.
    Transportation and storm drain fees, which show up on utility bills, have not been adjusted since 2009, but operation costs have increased, the memo said.
    With $14.9 million in unfunded transportation projects and $3.3 million in unfunded storm drain system projects on the city of Ashland's capital improvements list, more fee increases in future years are projected, according to the memo.
    In other business on Tuesday night, the council will consider whether to approve a new three-year contract that includes raises for Ashland Police Association members.
    During the previous three-year contract that expired on June 30, the police union members did not receive raises for two of the three years, according to a city staff memo to councilors.
    Under the proposed new three-year contract, police would receive a 2 percent cost-of-living-adjustment raise this fiscal year and 3 percent COLA increases each year in the second and third years of the contract.
    Police with an associate's degree would get 2 percent raises, those with a bachelor's degree would get 3 percent raises and those with a master's degree would get 5 percent raises.
    Police would receive 2 percent raises after attaining 10 years of continuous service and 4 percent raises for achieving 15 years of continuous service.
    They could earn an extra $500 in the first year of the contract for achieving fitness targets and $600 each year during the following two years of the contract for reaching those goals.
    Those raises plus other incentives will cost the city of Ashland an estimated $69,587, according to a memo to councilors.
    Giving added education, longevity and fitness raises and bonuses to police managers who are not represented by the Ashland Police Association will cost another $27,077, the memo said.
    That would bring the total cost of the various incentives and raises for the Ashland Police Department to $96,664.
    Staff reporter Vickie Aldous can be reached at 541-479-8199 or vlaldous@yahoo.com.
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