County officials drop request for on-call pay for highway department employees

County officials have dropped a county highway department proposal to pay highway employees up front for on-call time.

The Bartholomew County commissioners asked county highway engineer Danny Hollander to drop his proposal to pay three hourly workers $60 a week to be on call nights and weekends whether or not they actually work, said Commissioner Larry Kleinhenz.

If those employees are called in to work, they would be paid time-and-a-half, which is overtime, Hollander told the council during their work session last week.

The proposal was approved by county personnel consultant R. Kent Irwin and the seven-member Bartholomew County Personnel and Administration committee, Hollander said.

But Bartholomew County Council members were skeptical about the proposal at their work session March 4.

During the work session, council members raised questions that the personnel and administration committee did not consider, such as how an on-call policy at the highway department would affect overtime policies at the county jail and the Bartholomew County Youth Services Center, Kleinhenz said.

“We asked Danny to pull (the proposal) because we knew, at that point, that what he was asking for wouldn’t fly,” Kleinhenz said. “In fact, it would create more problems that it would solve.”