Bossier City's 2018 budget includes pay raise for workers

Published: Oct. 17, 2017 at 10:53 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 17, 2017 at 11:34 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn
A picture of the Bearcat Medevac armored ambulance vehicle that the Bossier City Fire...
A picture of the Bearcat Medevac armored ambulance vehicle that the Bossier City Fire Department is asking for to respond to active shooter situations. (Source: Bossier City Fire Department)

BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - For the first time in years, Bossier City employees will receive a raise.

Specifically, they will get a 2% cost-of-living increase.

It is part of the 2018 budget council members unanimously approved Tuesday afternoon

Council President and District 2 Councilman Jeffery Darby confirmed this is the first raise employees have received since a 2.5% cost-of-living boost in 2016.

"I think it was very necessary and it was well-deserved by those who have sacrificed for the citizens of Bossier," Darby said after the meeting.

According to Darby, city leaders believed they would have to pay more in insurance payments in 2018.

However, upon the city switching to Blue Cross Blue Shield, Darby said they were informed their rate would be the same as 2017's, freeing up the money for the raises.

"It was perfect. It was perfect that it happened that way," Darby said. "The city employees work very hard. They're very dedicated, very committed to the citizens of Bossier."

This raise is separate from the state-mandated 2% cost-of-living increase for all police and fire employees.

Also during Tuesday's meeting, council members unanimously approved introducing an ordinance to purchase an armored ambulance vehicle for the Bossier City Fire Department.

Under the ordinance, the city would dedicate $375,000 from its 2017 EMS Capital and Contingency Fund to buy a Bearcat Medevac.

Fire Chief Brad Zagone told council members they need the vehicle to get them to victims in active shooter situations even faster, protecting them so they don't have to wait for police to first clear the scene of shooters.

"After Las Vegas, looking at it and being able to get to the victims. A lot of victims, when we look at these studies, die from a non-fatal gunshot wound. And we want to be able to get to the victims fast," Zagone told council members.

The unanimous vote of approval went only to the ordinance's introduction. It will be another three weeks before final approval possibly comes during the council's next meeting.

Copyright 2017 KSLA. All rights reserved.