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Orange adds position to Finance Department

With the City of Orange Finance Department continuing with Hurricane Ike paperwork, adding the storm Harvey, the department requested an additional Accounting Clerk position to be added.

The department handles the city’s financial reporting, recording of funds collected, purchasing, payment of bills, payroll processing, transfers and ACH for payroll, and bond payments, FEMA submissions, all grant financing reporting, all normal insurance claims, all disaster related insurance claims, and more according to a memo from Finance Director Cheryl Zeto in a request to consider adding a position.

“Sherry Jackson is doing a fabulous job,” Zeto told the council during the Monday morning meeting. “She works late every night.”

Jackson’s position is salary, so ineligible for overtime.

Zeto also researched the number of positions in other cities of similar size and population as Orange. Other cities had five to seven positions.

“We have four and if you recall last year, even the auditors said we were understaffed,” Zeto said.

Mayor Jimmy Sims agreed the department was stretched thin.

“Through the storm it was apparent they were in huge need of help and are stretched thin,” Sims said. “Throw a storm in, makes it worse.”

Council member Patrick Pullen requested the item be tabled and to go into closed session so the council members could ask questions.

City Manager Dr. Shawn Oubre said it did not qualify as an executive session item.

“With discussions other employees may have to leave the city,” Pullen said. “It is hard to approve when others may have to go.”

“I don’t sleep good at night when letting people go,” Oubre said.

The minimum annual base salary for the position will be $34,174.40 with the estimated total salary with taxes and benefits would be $52,000. The maximum annual base salary would be $45,988.80, with the estimated total salary with taxes and benefits would be $74,000.

Initially the funding will be from the Contingency Fund and next budget will be part of the Finance Department budget.

“It could cost the city more without the position,” Councilmember Brad Childs said.