Lake Twp. employees get $2 an hour raise during coronavirus crisis

MILLBURY — While some businesses and organizations are looking at layoffs and reductions in force due to
coronavirus, Lake Township is giving pay bumps.
At Tuesday’s meeting, the trustees approved paying all non-salaried part-time and full-time employees an
additional $2 an hour “hazardous duty pay” from March 16-April 26.
The pay bump affects about 60 employees, including police officers, firefighters and road workers, said
Police Chief Mark Hummer, who is also the township administrator.
It will cost $15,000, he said.
“I think it’s just a great thing to do for our vital employees,” he said, calling this an “unprecedented
hazardous situation.”
Salaried workers, such as himself and Fire Chief Bruce Moritz, along with the trustees, will not be
getting a pay increase, Hummer said.
“We really felt that all of our employees are essential — police, fire, road cemetery — everything is
still moving along. It just might be at a different pace,” said Jeff Pettit, trustee chairman. “We did
it as a nice gesture.”
He added that the move isn’t unprecedented. Some bigger companies, such as grocery and big box stores,
have offered incentive pay to lure or keep employees.
The $2 an hour can only be used for hours worked, Pettit said. It cannot be applied toward vacation or
overtime, he said.
”This would only be for actual hours worked, not be tied in with overtime rate,” Hummer said.
“We serve the public and we need to be here for them,” Hummer said. “We don’t have any non-essential
employees.”
Trustee Richard Welling said that the township’s firefighters, EMTs, paramedics, cemetery workers and
police officers are in danger due to COVID-19.
“They’re on the front lines, with exposure to the virus,” he said.
In other business, the majority of the board approved declaring an emergency for the township due to
coronavirus.
Pettit and Welling voted in favor. Trustee Ken Gilsdorf, who could not be reached for further comment,
voted against it. He had concerns about giving too much control to Hummer.
The trustees initially thought that the resolution passed, 2-1. However, Welling on Thursday said that it
needed a unanimous vote to go into effect.
Welling said he wasn’t sure if it would be brought before the board again for another vote.
Also at Tuesday’s meeting, the trustees set the next meeting for May 5 at 5:30 p.m.