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More time sought to review employee handbook in Dixon

Fire Department set to hire new firefighter

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014 10:08 a.m. CDT
Jeff Kuhn

DIXON – Two items expected to be on the City Council agenda for a vote Monday night didn’t get one.

The council was expected to vote on its revised employee handbook and a $1.2 million loan to the Dixon Public Library.

The loan for library repairs was discussed during the last council meeting in July, but the necessary paperwork hadn’t been completed in time for Monday night’s meeting.

The handbook was on the agenda but was tabled, so that the commissioners could have more time to review the 22-page document. The motion to table was made by Commissioner Jeff Kuhn.

“It’s a very extensive document, and it covers a whole range of everything, all the non-union [employees] to the union people,” he said. “And there’s just some items in there that we never talked about.

“All they did was just hand this to us and say, ‘What do you think?’ Well, like anything you’re going to put a lot of faith in, you need to discuss it.”

The employee handbook underwent its most extensive revision in years. It was a 6-month process of meetings and discussions involving department heads and commissioners.

Dixon is also working on a policies-and-practices manual, which will address more substantive issues, such as how much department heads are permitted to spend, that aren’t addressed in the employee handbook.

Fire Department

The Dixon Fire Department will look to increase its force from 17 to 18 firefighters in anticipation of a retirement.

Adding the new firefighter before the retirement will prevent the department from being short-staffed while the new firefighter attends firefighter and emergency medical technician training, which could take a full year.

By adding the firefighter now and timing it up with the retirement, the city will save cost of overtime and an understaffed department, Commissioner Dennis Considine said.

Next meeting

The Dixon City Council next meets at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 18 at City Hall, 121 W. Second St., on the second floor in the Council Chambers.

Go to www.DiscoverDixon.org or call City Hall at 815-288-1485 for an agenda or more information.

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