I’m writing a story for tomorrow’s paper about employee holiday gift cards in La Puente. Looks like they might be on the chopping block because of budget constraints…..
The City Council will consider Tuesday eliminating annual employee holiday gift cards in an effort to save more than $4,000 annually.
The city has been handing out the gift cards at the end of each calendar year since 1999. It began as an alternative to a holiday party, and cost the city about $1,700 in its first year when employees were getting $50 each, according to city staff reports.
In 2005, the amounts were increased to $75 for full-time employees and $25 for part-time employees despite the fact that the city’s holiday party had been brought back.
If the City Council axes the long-time tradition, city coffers would save an extra $4,230 this fiscal year, staff reports show.
What do you guys think? Fiscal responsibility or penny pinching?
***I just got off the phone with officials in Whittier and Pasadena. I wanted to get a feel for whether or SGV cities were cutting back on holiday employee perks. It looks like they’re not.
Both Whittier and Pasadena provide holiday breakfasts for their employees. Whittier Assistant City Manager Nancy Mendez said most of the preparation is done in-house, so it doesn’t cost much.
Pasadena spokeswoman Ann Erdman said her city’s holiday party would be scaled back, but not cancelled.
Both cities offer no holiday bonuses to employees.
“There are (non) … that go to employees on the taxpayers’ dimes or anybody else’s for that matter,” Erdman said. “I’ve never heard of such a thing.”