Timing of Morrow bonuses suspect

There are hard working men and women who work for the city of Morrow and like most people in most jobs these days, they probably could stand to make more money.

They provide good services to the community, are courteous and we have heard very few complaints about city staff.

However, during a time when most non-government employees have a pay freeze at work, have not have received a raise in the past four years and bonuses have pretty much been eliminated, dolling out more than $22,000 in Christmas bonuses is not easy to swallow.

We are not in any way saying city employees don’t deserve it.

We are saying the city really can’t afford it and citizens can’t stand it.

The Morrow City Council voted 3-0 to spend the $22,200 on the Christmas bonuses for employees, despite facing a more than $700,000 deficit for the current fiscal year.

The city had a deficit of more than $500,000 at the end of the last fiscal year.

Admittedly the city has some funds in reserves, but how many times and how deeply can you dip into the rainy day account?

During a time when most people are happy to have a job that pays anything, while it is a nice gesture for the city employees, it may seem more like a slap in the face to citizens who barely get by and live month-to-month.

Morrow is losing jobs, businesses are closing and the city coffers are likely to suffer, even more.

The city is also facing a $6 million balloon bond payment in about three years and currently lacks even half of the money needed to make that payment.

Outgoing members of the city council should have been far more circumspect.

Was this a parting shot at citizens?

While this is the kind of action that may very well ingratiate them to city workers and their families, it is not the kind of thing that citizens and voters are likely to soon forget.

These members of city council who will not be returning to office will not be around to balance the budget, trim spending and figure out how to pay for the bonuses.

Isn’t that convenient?

We are obviously happy for these hard working city employees.

We are not so happy for residents who will not be getting raises, not be getting bonuses, but will be having to pay for these payouts.

— Editor Jim Zachary