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New Crookston City Administrator contract details

Jess Bengtson
Crookston Times

    The City of Crookston finalized its new City Administrator Employment Agreement Wednesday for Amy Finch after a unanimous vote from the City Council at their one-minute special meeting at City Hall. Finch will begin her new job October 19.

    Inside Finch’s agreement were 17 sections or “mutual covenants and conditions”, as laid out in the contract, that were agreed upon between the employer (City) and employee.

    1. Position: Finch agrees to serve as Administrator in accordance with Minnesota state statutes, city charter and ordinances, the city’s code of ethics and conduct, code of ethics of the International and Minnesota City/County Management Associations, and to “perform such other legally permissible and proper duties and functions as the City Council shall from time to time assign.”

    2. Moving and Relocation Allowance: The city will reimburse Finch for up to $2,500 for moving after three months of employment, but she will not be paid or reimbursed for house hunting expenses. She must reside within city limits and provide receipts of moving expenses.

    3. Pension Plan: The city will contribute to PERA as required by state law.

    4. Salary: Finch will earn $110,000 per year starting October 19, 2020. An initial performance review will be conducted after six months and at least annually thereafter and at times determined by the city. The city may also consider a pay increase dependent upon the results of her performance evaluation.

    5. Seniority: “For purposes of employment benefits such as sick leave and vacation leave, Employee (Finch) will be credited with having completed six years of employment with the Employer (City) upon her first day of employment.”

    6. Sick Leave: Finch will be credited with 40 hours of accrued sick leave and will accrue sick leave in accordance with the city’s personnel policies.

    7. Vacations: Effective on her first day, Finch will be credited with 80 hours of accrued vacation leave and she’ll accrue 6.66 hours per month until the end of her first year. Then, she’ll accrue 10 hours per month.

    8. Holidays: The city shall provide Finch “the same holidays as enjoyed by other non-union employees.”

    9. General Insurance: The city will provide Finch the same group hospital, medical, dental, life and disability insurance benefits as provided to all other non-union employees.

    10. Dues and Subscriptions: The city will budget and pay Finch’s professional dues and subscriptions for her continued participation in national, regional, state and local associations necessary and desirable for her continued professional participation, growth and advancement.

    11. Professional Development: The city will budget and pay registration, travel and subsistence expenses for professional and official travel, meetings and occasions adequate to continue professional development. Finch “shall use good judgment in her outside activities so she will not neglect her primary duties” to the city.

    12. Civic Club Membership: The city recognizes the “desirability of representation” in and before local civic and other organizations, and Finch will be authorized to become a member at the city’s expense.

    13. Automobile: Finch will not be paid a monthly allowance for use of any personal automobile for city business.

    14. Hours of Work: It’s understood that the City Administrator requires attendance at evening meetings and occasionally at weekend meetings, and Finch agreed that additional compensation and compensatory time will not be allowed. Finch may also absent herself from the office for a reasonable extent in consideration of extraordinary time expenditures for evening and weekend meetings at other than normal working hours.

    15. Termination Benefits: In the event that Finch is terminated by the city, the city agrees to pay Finch a lump sum cash payment equal to three months aggregate salary and to continue to provide and pay for agreed benefits for three months following termination. If she’s terminated because of her malfeasance in office, gross misconduct, conviction for a felony, or conviction for an illegal act involving personal gain, the city would have no obligation to pay the termination benefits.

    Note: If the city, at any time, reduces her salary or other financial benefits in a greater percentage than across-the-board reduction for all non-union employees, or if the city refuses (following written notice) to comply with any other provisions of the agreement, or Finch resigns following a formal suggestion by the city that she resign, then Finch may be deemed to be “terminated” and shall be entitled to receive the termination benefits set forth in the agreement.

    If Finch voluntarily resigns, Finch agrees to give the city 45 days of advance notice and there will be no termination pay for her.

    16. Bonding: Finch shall bear the full cost of any fidelity or other bonds required of her pursuant to any law or ordinance.

    17. General Conditions of Employment: Nothing in the agreement “shall prevent, limit or otherwise interfere” with the right of the city to terminate the services of Finch at any time, for any reason, subject only to the provisions of the agreement and statutory requirements. Nothing shall prevent the right of Finch to resign at any time from her position with the city.

    The agreement was subsequently signed by Finch, Mayor Dale Stainbrook and Finance Director/City Clerk Angel Weasner.

Amy Finch