The City of Perrysburg has recently been having discussions concerning the rehiring of retired City employees. Many have voiced concerns about “double dipping” and it’s supposed “unfairness.”
After doing some research as it pertains to the City of Perrysburg, I’ve found that rehiring of retirees could prove beneficial to the taxpayers in most instances. Rehiring a known, trained, and experienced employee with a wage and benefit package of a new employee could save the City thousands of dollars.
There are certain criteria that must be adopted for rehiring to be feasible.
First of all, the position vacated must be evaluated to determine if it needs to be filled, reclassified, or abolished.
Second, after consulting with the division head(s) supervising or utilizing that position, the mayor determines the reemployment of that employee will provide an extraordinary and demonstrated benefit to city operations. One test of this factor would be a position that requires extensive training, certification, or high skill level.
Third would be the employee’s attendance record, work history, and performance evaluations. Rehiring a marginal employee won’t work.
Fourth, the retiree would be treated as if he was a new employee in regards to wages, vacation, sick time, and any other benefit offered through the union contract or personnel policy.
The last thing that needs to be addressed is the length of the reemployment. With the City of Perrysburg, that length would be 7 years since additional vacation would start to apply.
Reemployment has always seemed to raise the ire of the public as abuse of their tax dollars. My research shows something different. If everyone that was eligible to retire who now works for the city did retire, the city would save over $384,000 a year in wages alone. Add to that 79 fewer weeks of vacation.
Another potential advantage would be the solvency of the retirement system. I say potential because I haven’t run the exact numbers. But since the retired employee can’t collect two public pensions, the City’s portion of that rehired employees pension contribution would never be collected in the future, so would help solidify the pension system as a whole.
A new employee would make the same contribution but would collect it in the future when he/she retired.
As bad as the connotation of “double dipping” sounds, it really isn’t an abuse of taxpayer’s monies as I see it. So the argument must go to another level, why does someone get to retire before he or she is 65 or is still able to work? That’s an argument for another day.