Youngstown Considers $1,000 Incentive For Vaccinated City Employees

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Every city employee could be eligible for a one-time cash incentive in exchange for being vaccinated against COVID-19, according to legislation scheduled to go before City Council next week.

An ordinance sponsored by 6th Ward Councilwoman Anita Davis proposes offering a single, $1,000 bonus to all employees who can show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID.

“We’ve lost a couple of employees because of Covid,” Davis says. “The hope is to get all of our employees vaccinated, since they come into contact with the public.”

The ordinance says that the city would award a cash incentive to all employees who are already fully vaccinated or would receive the vaccine with 45 days of the legislation’s passage.

That would mean the employee would have to prove they had received two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines and one dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, according to the proposed legislation. It does not cover subsequent booster shots against the virus.

The city employs about 700 full-and part-time employees, says Finance Director Kyle Miasek, and funding would come from $82.7 million the city was awarded through the American Rescue Plan, he says.

Since the legislation does not identify a funding source, a second piece of legislation approving appropriation of these funds would require Council’s OK, he says.

Seasonal employees would be excluded from the proposal, Miasek says.

Fourth Ward Councilman Mike Ray says he wants to make sure that any incentives offered to employees are fair and appropriate. “I’m going to need a little more information,” he says.

Davis says she’s hoping the cash incentive will encourage those who have yet to be vaccinated to do so. “I’m hoping this will spur them on,” she says.

Copyright 2021 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.