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FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Council has increased its contribution to the city staff Christmas party by $4,000.
The request from the city’s human resources department, which went before council on Monday afternoon, looked to up the budget for the party from its current $6,000 to $10,000. Council passed the recommendation unanimously.
The report cites rising costs related to inflation and an increased number of city staff since the policy was first implemented in 2008.
The original policy, according to the report, was designed for 184 staff members and was enough to buy dinner for each employee.
The city now employs about 283 staff, but the amount calculated for the Christmas party is based on average staff turnout at these events.
The $10,000 budget was requested both to help mitigate rising food prices and account for an expected higher average turnout — though likely still not the full 283 employees.
While there are other costs increasing in addition to that of food, those expenses (like music and entertainment) are covered by the City Staff Fund.
The Christmas party, the report says, creates opportunity for networking among departments, strengthens relationships, and increases retention and morale.
The policy change would result in a $10,000 contribution from council for every annual Christmas party, starting in 2022.
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