The City of Sylvania has for years benefited from many hardworking and loyal employees willing to work a variety of tasks as needed to make municipal government run efficiently and responsively.
Many have worked for the city 30 years or more and are reaching retirement age.
Recent changes to the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System lead to the retirement of many of these long-term employees before the end of 2012. The city workers involved included many work areas: clerk of council, utilities, zoning, finance, court and police dispatching.
The retirements have allowed the city to evaluate and update its organizational structure and staffing requirements. Some positions are being combined, while other positions are being eliminated. The effect of these changes means fewer people working for the city than in 1996 when I became mayor.
No reduction in services to our residents are planned as a result of these retirements and the reduction in personnel.
The fewer number of employees for 2013 has allowed the city to reduce budgeted General Fund expenditures by 6.1 percent from 2012. Losses of revenue from the State of Ohio, lower property tax values and lower investment income have required lower spending to balance the budget without increasing tax rates.
The many long-term employees who have retired served the city well and will be missed for their hard work, loyalty and institutional knowledge. New employees are being selected to add new skills, ideas and vitality to the city workforce.
New Finance Director Toby Shroyer also will serve as city treasurer and perform some human resource responsibilities. The new clerk of City Council is Sharon Bucher, combining those duties with her current responsibilities.
As the baby boomer generation continues to reach retirement age, the city anticipates additional retirements. The city will continue evaluating operations and restructuring for greater operating efficiency, and hiring only as necessary to maintain current levels of city services.