Police pension amended, will save city money

By: 
Sep. 5, 2012

The city and the police union reached a deal lowering the city's contribution to the police pension fund.

BY MATT MENCARINI | STAFF WRITER

The City Commission approved several amendments to the Police Officer’s Pension Trust Fund on Tuesday.

The amendments were part of the collective bargaining agreement with the Florida State Fraternal Order of Police and will reduce the city’s required contribution for the 2012-13 fiscal year by 1% of payroll, saving approximately $60,000, according to city documents.

The city also estimates that the amended pension will result in additional savings in the future as new employees will receive less benefits and there are now limits on overtime and lump-sum buyouts in the pension benefit calculation.

Amendments to the pension are as follows:

  • Members employed by the department prior to the ratification date who have not entered the Deferred Retirement Option Program program will be eligible to enter the program with a 2% interest rate (instead of the current rate of 6.5%).
  • Employees hired after the ratification date will not be eligible to participate in the DROP.
  • Employees hired after the ratification date will receive a defined benefit based on a multiplier equal to 2.75% of the final average compensation for each year of service (instead of the current rate of 3.3%).
  • For all employees, inclusion of overtime in the pension calculation will be limited to 300 hours per year.

Land re-designation

The commission approved an ordinance that changed the designation of one parcel of land, roughly 0.46 acres, from “open space/conservation” to “office professional.”

Nova/Old Kings Investors Inc. owns the land, located roughly 1,000 feet from the intersection of West Granada Boulevard and Nova Road. A site plan to develop the property with a bank has been approved.

According to city documents, the property is “consistent with the B-1 zoning classification and compatible with surrounding ‘Office/Professional’ uses.” And while the lot is currently vacant, the city did not expect the land use change to have any adverse impacts to infrastructure.

New design style

An ordinance allowing developers more freedom when designing buildings for Ormond Beach passed during the City Commission meeting on Tuesday night.

Previously, if a developer’s building design didn’t meet one of the four pre-determined styles, an approval from the City Commission was necessary to proceed.

Planning Director Ric Goss said the ordinance creates a neo-eclectic style, which combines several styles and has a more modern look. Goss added that this is an issue the commission has dealt with for a few years.

The previous four styles were Spanish, Bermuda, Mediterranean and Old Florida Cracker.

City Commission thanked for donation

Lauren Wycuff, an outreach representative from the Early Learning Coalition of Flagler and Volusia, addressed the commission during the public hearing on Tuesday night in regard to a donation the city made to the organization.

“We just wanted to personally be here as representatives of the Early Learning Coalition to thank the city of Ormond Beach for blessing us with over $7,000 for our organization,” Wycuff said. “The local funding that we receive goes directly to our School Readiness Program (which) provides subsidized childcare for low-income families.”

Wycuff added that the local funding the organization receives gets a 16-1 match from the state, and as a result, the $7,440 given by the city turned into $119,040. She said the money would help more than 30 children attend the program, greatly reducing childcare expenses for those families.