A pay raise of more than $30 an hour given to the Beatrice city administrator in December was prompted by another job offer he was considering, according to Mayor Stan Wirth.
Tobias Tempelmeyer, who works as both the city administrator and general manager of the Board of Public Works, received the pay raise late last year.
Tempelmeyer's current salary is $210,000 annually, compared to $147,555 a year ago.
Wirth said the pay raise of more than $60,000 since last year was prompted by another job offer Tempelmeyer was considering,
“I think it’s necessary to note Tobias is a marketable enterprise and that he had a more attractive off than even what we ended up with, but we were able to convince him to stay with us," Wirth said. "...We had no qualms about that because of the continuity he provides for the city of Beatrice.”
Wirth said Tempelmeyer has been instrumental in city projects and negotiations, including negotiating a contract for a new energy provider following the end of Beatrice’s contract with Nebraska Public Power District.
“He’s an attorney who assists with quite a bit of negotiations, most recently negotiating prices for the location for the new fire station, but also worked with the consulting group that is assisting with the departure of NPPD and emergence of AEP, our new energy provider," Wirth said. "That is going to save us a tremendous amount of money over the next 5-10 years. We’re pretty excited about that aspect of it.”
Tempelmeyer has been the city administrator since 2012. Prior to that, he was the city attorney since 2008.
Wirth added that Tempelmeyer does the work that other first class cities in Nebraska have three employees perform, putting the salary on par with other areas if those three positions were combined.
Additionally, he said that if Tempelmeyer had left Beatrice the city wouldn’t have found a replacement who would take on all of city administrator’s duties for the previous pay.
“The other wrinkle to all of this is we were going to have to look for another city administrator,” Wirth said. “What we were paying Tobias, we couldn’t get a sniff. People wouldn’t look at us for what we were paying him. We would have had to increase the salary to try to attract someone to do the duties he’s doing today. Sometimes you need to be careful what you ask for."