MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) --Mobile city employees won't be getting a raise: at least not right now.
Mayor Sandy Stimpson had proposed a two and a half percent pay raise for all city employees, crediting tax revenues and good fiscal management.
On the Mobile City Council agenda Tuesday was a budget amendment that would have provided that raise.
The council voted to substitute a proposal only giving raises to merit system employees, not contract employees hired by the mayor.
Many council members cited concern the effect that move could have on the lawsuit filed by the mayor against the council.
Afterwards, Mayor Stimpson pulled the raises off the table, for now, until he said staff members could find a way to give all city employees raises.
During council discussions, Council Vice President Levon Manzie said, "I'm not trying to stifle anyone from receiving an appropriate raise in salary, but we want to make certain that what we do doesn't harm us from the standpoint that we find ourselves in legally."
After the council meeting, Mayor Stimpson told reporters, "These are people that are working just as hard as everybody else and to say, 'Oh, it's just a few: we wont give the raise to, you know.' We're fighting for all the employees and we will figure out a way to give them all a raise."
Later in the day Tuesday, Council members issued a response to the mayor, saying they were disappointed he chose this path and hope he will reconsider his position and send the raises to the personnel board.
EARLIER STORY: The Mobile City Council on Tuesday approved a budget amendment approving a 2.5 percent raise for city employees under the merit system, not contract employees appointed by mayor.
However, a short time later Mayor Sandy Stimpson said no one is getting a raise -- for now, anyway.
At this morning’s meeting, members of the City Council unanimously approved the cost-of-living raises for all merit system city employees.
“We are all so pleased that we are able to provide this much deserved and long overdue raise,” said Council Vice President Levon Manzie. “These employees are the backbone of our city. We are hopeful this will help them know how much all their hard work is appreciated by us and the whole city.”
An amendment to the proposed resolution approved by the Council clarified at-will employees appointed by Stimpson are not included in the legislation. The amendment was necessary as a result of that category of employees being included in the ongoing litigation initiated by Stimpson, according to a news release from the City Council.
But that's a sticking point for the mayor.
"This fight is not over. I pledge to find a way to reward our employees, all of them," Stimpson told reporters.
Stimpson said, "Until we can figure out how to get everybody included, there will not be a raise."