Tulsa Going Ahead With Change to City Employees' Pay

Feb 20, 2014

Credit KWGS News

Around 1,400 city employees will be changed from semimonthly to biweekly pay checks soon.

The change means employees will get paid for all of February next Friday and the first week of March two weeks later. The city offered to let employees sell back time off to make up for a small check.

Councilor Jeannie Cue said she'd like to see a way for employees without that time to sell get a normal check.

"We want to make sure that they can make it through the week," Cue said. "The people that, maybe, do not live that way, can't always understand that just the little fluctuation in a paycheck can really set a family back."

The city says employees have had three months to prepare and their annual pay won't be any less than usual.

The head of the employees' union is saying they didn't approve the change after the city decided not to do it in August. Cue said now that the council is confident employees won't be losing pay, it's time to make sure the right negotiation procedures were followed.

"If they're not, we're going to hear about it, and it will come back through the council," Cue said. "Not knowing what they've negotiated and what they have — you know, this is a continuous contract — we just want our employees to be treated fairly."

The main sticking point on the issue during today's public works committee meeting was when employees would be paid for the last two weeks of 2014. The head of the union was insistent the contract says employees be paid their annual salaries entirely within the year. 

Under the new pay schedule, employees' paycheck for the last two full weeks worked in December will be issued Jan. 2, 2015.