Severance Policy To Be Questioned

Augusta, Georgia Seal graphic
Augusta, Georgia Seal graphic

(AUGUSTA,GA) Augusta commissioners Sean Frantom wants to know why a resigning Augusta department Director gets to take months of their salary with them.

“If you look at it from the private side sector we don’t have it on the private side so why do we do it on that side,” said Frantom.

What the commission did was give Fire Chief Chris James who resigned as position four months’ severance pay worth 36 thousand dollars.

A practice Frantom feels commissioners need to talk about.

“I want to have the discussion I want to see how many employees if affects I want to see how much we have given out in the past and how much we could give out in the future and have the discussion on why we are doing it this way,” said the Commissioner.

Commissioner Dennis Williams is willing to have that discussion about giving department heads who resign severance pay, but says offering the pay helps in the hiring process.

“You have to use these packages as a tool in order to attract quality workers to you community,” said Williams.

“I disagree because we’re bringing in people at the higher level of the pay scale with the fact that we haven’t had pay increases and all those things we’re already bringing them in and we’re already giving them a good package when they come in,” said Frantom.

City policy states that all department directors are eligible for severance pay if they’re fired. How much is determined by job title and years of service.

But, a department head who resigns must give -90 days’ notice- or they are not entitled to severance pay but that policy can be waived by the commission or the administrator.

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