Lewisville city employees could see raises in fiscal year 2024-25.

In an effort to remain competitive in employee recruitment and retention, council members and city officials discussed pay increases for general government, dispatch and detention, and part-time employees at a July 1 workshop. In FY 2024-25, the city could spend between $4.7 million-$5.8 million on employee compensation increases, per city documents.

Officials specifically focused on Lewisville police and fire department raises, targeting to be comparable to the top third of salaries from surrounding Dallas-Fort Worth cities, according to city documents. In FY 2023-24, general city employees received a 4% raise, and police and firefighters received a 6% raise.

“In our market analysis, we compare ourselves against 17 nearby cities that share our labor pool,” Human Resources Director Tadd Phillips said.

The details

Despite aiming to pay 103% of the $102,150 market average last year for highest police officer salaries, Lewisville ranks 12th among its competitors for highest police salaries this year, Phillips said. For firefighters, pay ranks 12th and is below the $96,000 market average for the highest salaries.

To rank in the top third among peer cities for both police officer and firefighter salaries, Lewisville would need to approve raises that bring both to at least 104% of the market average, which would be salaries of $106,237 and $100,388, respectively, Phillips said. However, that average is always a moving target, he added.

“By the time we do a change in October, there might be three or four other cities that [change salaries] at the same time as us,” Phillips said.

City officials also recommended an $80 per month pay increase for police and fire field training officers, which would cost around $28,000 annually. Additionally, police officers, firefighters, and dispatch and detention officers who earn below the top pay grades are eligible for an annual 4% raise, Phillips said.

Should the city approve all of the raises, it would come at a total combined cost of $3.4 million, according to city documents.

Digging deeper

Similarly, the city officials recommended pay increases for dispatch and detention officers, general government positions and part-time workers, such as crossing guards and lifeguards, to reach between 103%-105% of the market average for each, Phillips said. Meritorious raises between 3%-4% of current salaries for general employees, which include building inspectors and librarians, were also discussed at the meeting.

What else?

Last year, city officials created an employee progression program aimed at moving professionals without management responsibilities into new senior-level positions. About 47 individuals are taking those positions this summer with the possibility to see 71 more move into the roles by the end of FY 2024-25, Phillips said. The city expects to incur almost $500,000 in costs next fiscal year due to those changes.

“This is a great tool we can use to retain individual contributors and have them see a path forward,” he said.

Going forward

If City Council approves the recommended compensation plan and all proposed raises, it would cost between $4.7 million-$5.8 million, according to city documents.

Changes would take place at the start of the fiscal year in October. Council members and staff will continue compensation discussions going into August with approval slated before the beginning of FY 2024-25, Phillips said.