Brookhaven City Board approves raises for two directors, police patrol officers

Published 11:00 am Thursday, April 18, 2024

Tuesday, the Brookhaven Board of Aldermen approved raises for the City’s Public Works Director, Solid Waste Superintendent, and Police Department patrol officers.

The board approved a raise for Public Works Director Kris Xifos in the amount of $3,000 annually. Another $3,000 raise will be added in January 2025. Aldermen voted 7-0 in favor of the raise after discussion in executive session.

Ward 6 Alderman Andre’ Spiller then motioned for a $5,000 raise to be given to Solid Waste Superintendent Tion Lebbage. With a second from Alderman-at-large Don Underwood, the motion received two votes in support and one vote against, from Ward 5 Alderman Fletcher Grice.

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Grice said he voted against the motion because City Clerk Samantha Melancon had not been given an opportunity to determine if such a raise would work within the current city budget. The raise for Xifos had been reviewed and determined feasible within the budget, Grice said.

The 2-1 vote passed. The other aldermen — James Magee Jr., Ward 1; Shannon Moore, Ward 2; Rev. Charles Caston Sr., Ward 3; and Jeff Henning, Ward 4 — did not cast a vote in the matter.

Underwood then motioned for Brookhaven Police patrol officers to be given a raise, as well — $1,250 for certified and $400 for non-certified. Spiller seconded the motion, and the two were joined by Henning and Magee in voting for the raise. Grice, Moore and Caston voted against. The matter passed 4-3.
Grice said he voted against this raise for the same reason he voted against Lebbage’s raise.

“Better yet, we should wait until budget time and figure this out,” Grice said. “I’m not against these raises. I only think we should have waited until we looked at the budget first before voting on it. We have a fiduciary responsibility to do that. That’s why I voted ‘no.’”