ELYSBURG - Eleven Ralpho Township employees were unanimously approved for $6,240 worth of raises in 2013 at the board of supervisors meeting Monday night.

Police Chief Stu Appel, whose hourly rate increased from $27.25 per hour to $28.50 per hour, was approved for an employment contract for the first time in township history.

In the past, township manager Joe Springer said, the chief received the same increases as the police collective bargaining agreement, but the new contract includes an extra 50 cents per hour to reflect the chief's responsibilities over and above the other officers.

The five township police officers each received 75-cent per hour raises. Patrolman Bryon Chowka increased from $26.41 to $27.16, Patrolman Christian Dailey increased from $25.88 to $26.63, Patrolman Chris Kreisher increased from $26.65 to $27.40, Patrolman Stephen Spade increased from $25.88 to $26.63 and Patrolman Christopher Grow increased from $25.88 to $26.63.

Springer's rate increased $1 per hour from $21 to $22. He did not receive a raise in 2011 or 2012.

The remainder of the raises were all 50 cents per hour as follows: Secretary/Treasurer Debra Olson, $16.75 to $17.25; street department employee Wayne Horne, $16.90 to $17.40; roadmaster Howard Shadduck, $17.75 to $18.25; and buildings/grounds employee Charles Kowalchick, $10.50 to $11.

The majority of these positions are full time based on a 40-hour work week, except Kowalchick, who is part time based on a 20-hour work week, and Springer, who works as needed.

Zoning/Code Officer Mark Lyash, currently at $13 per hour, did not receive an increase because he received his probationary increase last month, but he will be eligible for an increase in 2014, Springer said.

The increases were all approved by the five members of the board after a brief executive session.

Supervisor William "Chip" Wetzel said the employees each deserved their raises.

"I feel as a supervisor that all the employees do a nice job for us and have a high standard of work ethic," he said.

Chairman Stephen Major agreed, saying the employees' work is reflected in the raises from the union contracts for the police and road crew, and from the contracts for the non-union employees.

"We want to reflect the good job they do for the township. They take care of the township, and are deserving of the raises we give them," he said.

The raises are retroactive to Jan. 1.

In other business, the board will be accepting quotes for insurance to be discussed at the February meeting.