Fort Lupton’s human resource director, Laura Howe, outlined some of the reasons why 72 employees left the city’s employ during a town hall meeting of Fort Lupton City Council on Feb. 8. 

Of the 72 who are no longer on the payroll, seven were seasonal employees, seven left “involuntarily” and 58 left voluntarily for such things as better-paying jobs or retirement. 

The city made exit interviews available to those workers. Fifteen completed the questionnaire, and those employees were able to offer several answers to each question.

Forty-seven percent left for new employment. Twenty-six percent went for a new job with more money, and 40 percent wanted jobs that were more in line with their experience. Other factors were spending more time with kids (6 percent) and commuting distance. 

“Everyone was happy with their supervisor,” Howe told the council. “I’m pleased with that. No one said the workload was ‘too little,’ so we don’t have folks who are leaving because they are overworked.” 

Two-thirds of those who participated said the city was a good place to work. The other third said it was a good place to work but had reservations. 

The question of previously approved department incentives and their impact on morale came up during this discussion. Police chief John Fryar hasn’t seen any voluntary departures from the force since the council OK’d the incentive package late last year. 

“We’ve had some departures involuntarily, such as people who didn’t complete the training process or who were dismissed for cause,” Fryar told councilors. “We have three (new officers) in training. We could have three more by the end of the month. Until they start,

we won’t know if the incentives were a success.” 

Public Works Director Roy Vestal said morale improved in his department. 

“We have three positions open that we filled internally,” he told the council. “We did interviews with people on the outside. But we had some issues. Morale is definitely up. They can see more of a future within the organization.” 

Council also wanted to explore the idea of spreading incentive packages across all departments in the city, not just a handful. 

“When we are deciding on the changes you request, this helps us see what employees are thinking,” Mayor Zo Stieber said. 

Howe plans to return to the Feb. 22 town hall with the results of an employee survey.