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Some city of Cincinnati essential workers to get $1,000 in one-time hazard pay

Pepi Stojanovski

Some city of Cincinnati essential workers are getting $1,000 in one-time hazard pay this month. The payments are for frontline city employees who couldn't do their jobs from home during the pandemic, like nurses, janitors, and police and fire officers.

Federal guidance allows use of American Rescue Plan funds for hazard pay for essential workers like janitors, childcare workers, truck drivers and staff at nursing homes and hospitals. Council previously allocated $2.8 million for hazard pay.

"There are about 2,000 folks who already have received this, and I suspect that we will see another 1,000 or 2,000," says Council Member Greg Landsman, who proposed the hazard pay plan. "I'm hopeful ... that there'll be a third opportunity to make sure that we've supported everybody that's really done what we needed them to do what taxpayers needed them to do."

City administration negotiated the hazard pay with the unions. Wednesday's ordinance expands the payments to some city workers not represented by a union.

Becca Costello grew up in Williamsburg and Batavia (in Clermont County) listening to WVXU. Before joining the WVXU newsroom, she worked in public radio & TV journalism in Bloomington, Indiana and Lincoln, Nebraska. Becca has earned numerous awards for her reporting, including from local chapters of the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists, and contributed to regional and national Murrow Award winners. Becca has a master's degree in journalism from Indiana University and a bachelor's degree from Cincinnati Christian University. Becca's dog Cincy (named for the city they once again call home) is even more anxious than she is.