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Palenick could receive small pay bump for time as DPW Commissioner
City of Racine

Palenick could receive small pay bump for time as DPW Commissioner


RACINE — City Administrator Jim Palenick could receive a small pay bump for his time as the interim Department of Public Works Commissioner, though larger issues with his contract have not been addressed.

Palenick has been serving as interim DPW Commissioner since Mark Yehlen retired in March. On Monday, the Finance and Personnel Committee recommended the council approve granting Palenick 5% in additional compensation, with back-pay going back to April, for his time serving as interim director.

During the discussion, Alderman Sandy Weidner of the 6th District addressed another issue regarding Palenick’s pay: his contract stipulates that he was to have annual reviews and if his job performance was considered satisfactory, he was supposed to be eligible for a raise. Neither the performance reviews nor the raises happened in 2018 or in 2019.

The committee did not address Palenick’s contract but recommended approval of his raise for his time as interim DPW commissioner.

Palenick was appointed by former Mayor John Dickert and approved by the City Council in March, 2017. He was granted a three-year contract, starting in April, 2017 and running through April, 2020.

Palenick confirmed last week that he has continued to apply for city manager positions across the country. He was selected as a finalist in Broomfield, Colorado and Columbia, Missouri. He has also applied for positions in Upper Arlington, Ohio and Gainesville, Florida.

“In each case these positions have been for a ‘city manager’ in a community with significant size, substance, and challenge, and with long histories of operating under the council-manager form of local government,” Palenick stated in an email.

The next City Council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Sept. 17, City Hall, 730 Washington Ave., Room 205.


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Christina Lieffring covers the City of Racine and the City of Burlington and is a not-bad photographer. In her spare time she tries to keep her plants and guinea pigs alive and happy.

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