Two personnel decisions topped this week’s brief Channahon village board meeting. Village Administrator Tom Durkin’s contract was extended another four years, with a 2.75 percent increase in annual pay to $132,283, plus medical, dental, health and hospitalization insurance and life insurance.
The terms of Channahon’s village administrators match those of the village president, which began this spring when Missey Moorman Schumacher was re-elected village president in April for another four-year term.
Durkin’s contract is retroactive to May 1 of this year.
“He has a wealth of experience,” Schumacher said of Durkin after Monday’s meeting. “He has done a great job at putting Channahon in a very, very good position business-wise, and we have a good amount of development going on. Over the last five years, we have gotten a reputation of being good to work with. That has changed things markedly for us.”
Schumacher said Durkin’s new salary was decided after she and the trustees considered the results of an outside agency compensation study the village contracted. Durkin’s approved salary was not even mid-range in the study’s results, she said.
Trustees Scott McMillin, Patricia Perinar and Scott Slocum voted against the village administrator’s new contract, and Sam Greco, Chantal Host and Mark Scaggs voted for it, leaving Schumacher to break the tie with an approval vote.
After the meeting, Slocum said he did not agree with the results of the compensation study.
“The study was, I believe, biased, and took into account other bloated public salaries in Will County," Slocum added in an email. "We should focus on what’s best for the residents of Channahon - not what other communities are paying their people.”
“I feel like we need to tamp down our salaries,” Perinar explained after the meeting. “I am concerned we are letting them get out of hand.”
“I understand our trustees want to be good stewards of the public’s funds, and we want to be cognizant of what we’re paying people,” Schumacher said. “We look at that in everybody. . . But this salary is not even mid-range in comparable salaries.”
Trustees also approved naming current Channahon water operator Jeff Barrett as Utilities and Streets Superintendent at an annual salary of $90,000. Barrett will replace former Superintendent Bruce Vaickus, who recently retired.
The village board Monday also approved the purchase of a new Altec telescopic aerial lift truck for $213,798, from Sourcewell Purchasing Co-op. The truck will replace an 18-year-old truck that was several feet shorter and will be used to change street lights along Route 6 and traffic signal lights, among other uses.
The village will also contribute $59,033 for its share of engineering for a multi-use path along McEvilley Road. According to Channahon’s Director of Public Works Ed Dolezal, Channahon currently maintains a path along Ford Road, with one end at the I&M Canal and the other end at Northcrest Drive in Heritage Lakes.
The village of Minooka maintains a path along McEvilley Road that ends on the west side of the DuPage River.
The communities would like to link the paths. Phase 1 engineering performed by Robinson Engineering would be split among Channahon (34.35 percent), Minooka (34.35 percent), Channahon Township Highway Department (14.6 percent), Will County (8.35 percent) and the Will County Forest Preserve District (8.35 percent).