Sequim City Manager Charlie Bush, seen taking his oath of office on Aug. 24, 2015, from Sequim City Clerk Karen Kuznek-Reese, recently received a positive review from Sequim city councilors and a raise. Sequim Gazette photo by Matthew Nash

Sequim City Manager receives pay raise following positive review

Sequim city councilors gave City Manager Charlie Bush high marks in a recent review leading to a raise in pay.

The city council met in executive session on Aug. 2, to review Bush’s performance where members rated his performance an 8.8 on a scale of 1-10 with an 8 being “very good” and 9 “excellent.”

City councilors voted unanimously at the Aug. 14 city council meeting for a Bush to receive a retroactive market pay increase of 1.5 percent and a retroactive merit pay increase of 2 percent upon completing Bush’s performance review.

Bush was hired as city manager on Aug. 17, 2015, after the retirement of Steve Burkett. His starting salary was $120,000 per year and he now makes $122,408 annually.

Sue Hagener, City of Sequim director of administrative services. said sometime this August Bush will receive an additional amount for the retroactvie pay to make his salary equivalent to $126,692, as approved by city councilors that would have gone into effect as of Jan. 1, 2017.

The city will process a check to Bush accommodating him for the retroactive pay and going forward the City will pay him at the new rate of $126,692. Effective Jan. 1, 2018, he will get another raise with a salary of $131,127.

She said any increases he receives in the future for performance will be effective the first day of the year following an evaluation planned for August 2018.

City staff said Bush’s pay increase is consistent with other non-represented staff in the city.

The increases stem from his performances in 2016 and 2017, city staff said, because of an 18-month gap between review periods.

Mayor Dennis Smith said on Aug. 14 that the council chose to make this evaluation an amendment rather than making changes to Bush’s employment contract.

In a summary sheet provided by city staff, Bush received a high score of 9.1, on average, for his openness with city councilors and an 8.7, on the low end, for his communications as a city manager, and overall rating on employee and public relations.

“Sequim is indeed fortunate to have Charlie Bush as city manager,” Smith said.

“Our facilitator for the recent evaluation stated that in all the years he has been doing these evaluations he cannot remember when the deviations between each individual council member, or scores for the city manager, had been so close.”

Bush said he is thankful for the opportunity to serve the city council, its employees and the Sequim community.

“I appreciate our city council taking the time to provide some feedback that will help me to be even more effective in the coming year,” Bush said.

City staff said more detailed information from each city councilors’ score sheet were exempt under Sequim Municipal Code.

Reach Erin Hawkins at ehawkins@sequimgazette.com.

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