By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
City workers in line for $2M+ for being on job during pandemic
Manteca City Hall
DENNIS WYATT/The Bulletin The first phase of the current city hall was built in 1978 when Manteca had 13,200 residents.

Somewhere between $2 million and $3 million of the nearly $14 million in federal COVID relief funds Manteca is receiving will be paid to municipal employees in the form of $5,000 bonuses as well as cash out for those workers that hit caps on vacation and leave during the pandemic.

On Tuesday the City Council meets at 7 p.m. to approve side letters with the Manteca Police Officers Association, Manteca Police Employees Association, and Operating Engineers Local Union 3.

The pair of $2,500 payments to employees is the same in all side letters including those reached with other municipal bargaining groups.

The cash out provision differs based on the employee group.

The cash out is for leave and vacation for workers that hit their limit and couldn’t keep accumulating it. They workers were prevented from taking the time off due to the city needing the workforce to handle pandemic emergency issues.

Police officers will receive 80 hours of sworn safety worker leave for continuing to report to work through the COVID pandemic plus being able to cash out for up to 80 hours during the current fiscal year if they hit caps.

Police department support employees will receive up to 50 hours of essential worker leave for continuing  to report to work through the pandemic. They can also cash out up to 80 hours that exceed the cap.

The operating engineers will receive 40 hours of essential workers leave as well as being able to cash out.

A police officer near the top of the pay scale based on the cost of the extra 80 hours of leave and the $5,000 payment without cashing any excess leave time that exceeded the caps would receive compensation worth roughly $10,000.

The staff report indicated the additional payment and time off will not impact the general fund as it can be legally paid from American Rescue Plan Act funds. That includes payroll costs the city would incur such as retirement contributions.

Not mentioned in reports available to the general public is the overall price tag on the council’s action even though the funds come from the referral relief funds.

Based on the number of city employees that will receive the $5,000 payment plus a conservative estimate of the cost of the additional paid leave and any cash outs, the final tab could easily run between $2 million and $3 million.

Assuming it doesn’t exceed $3 million and the city uses COVID relief funds to reimburse $4 million they had to use from the general fund reserve to balance last year’s budget impacted by the pandemic, there would be less than $7 million in COVID funds left for the City Council to spend.


To contact Dennis Wyatt, email