BELLEAIR BLUFFS - Mayor Chris Arbutine, pointing out the many tasks performed by the city clerk and the public works director, suggested at Monday's meeting that a part time "city planner" be hired to take some of the work load.
Arbutine's suggestion came in the discussion of evaluation of the two top city employees and the idea will be taken up by the commission in February.
Other members didn't outright endorse Arbutine's idea but they agreed to look at the situation.
The real subject of evaluations is raises and Commissioner Dave Shimkus suggested a 4 percent raise for Robert David, the public works director.
Commissioner Bob Russo moved for a 4.5 percent raise for City Clerk Debra Sullivan.
Arbutine said he saw nothing in the job reviews of the two employees to depart from the customary 5 percent raise for each.
In the end, the commission voted to give Sullivan a 4.75 percent raise and David a 4.5 percent raise, averaging the amounts discussed.
Commissioner Bret Nelson mentioned how uncomfortable it is to discuss employees' performances and raises at a public meeting.
But the commission, like every other elected body in Florida, has no choice. Business must be conducted in the "sunshine," and such discussions do not come under any exceptions to the law.
In other business, it was announced that there will be trash pick up on Christmas Day, which falls on a Monday this year.
County Administrator Steve Spratt will be at the Bluffs commission meeting Monday to promote the Penny for Pinellas. The Local Option Sales Tax (its official name) ends next year and there will be a referendum on the March ballot to extend it another 10 years, the second such extension.
Sheriff's deputies, who police the city, were asked to be stricter on sign enforcement in connection with open house showings and yard sales.
Commission members agreed to start the process of getting bids to erect a fountain on the southwest corner of Indian Rocks Road and West Bay Drive, part of the city's beautification plans.
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