East Providence is responsible for paying for the staff of the state-appointed budget commission under the oversight legislation that governs the board’s stay in the city.
That is what makes up the $245,000 bill to the city that was approved by the budget commission on Thursday.
“The members of the commission are not being paid anything,” said City Manager Peter Graczykowski, referring to himself as well as the four other members of the board, including Mayor James Briden.
“But the city is responsible for paying for their employees,” said Graczykowski, referring to Robert Eaton, Christy Healy and Heather Martino, who filled in for months as the city's human resources manager.
There is no separate agreement for their services with the state revenue department. It comes under the oversight legislation, he said.
Graczykoski said the staff members are paid for their hours worked, and the city is liable for the reimbursement to the state.
The bill will be paid early this week, he said. And the city will be responsible for all subsequent hours worked by these staff employees as well.
Graczykowski said he reviewed the bill and the hours billed to the city and it seemed correct.
The money being used to pay the bill is actually coming out of the savings generated by the commission’s work. The salary for a former purchasing agent, for instance, is being applied toward that bill.
Graczykowski said the commission will remain in East Providence and the city will be responsible for the staff hours until the director of the revenue department, Rosemary Booth Gallogly, abolishes the commission.
That will happen when it is determined that fiscal stability has returned to East Providence.