At tonight’s meeting, Springfield’s city council will be voting on pay raises for some of the city’s elected officials.
The proposal would raise the mayor’s salary from $95,000 to $135,000 starting in January.
Melvin Edwards is councilor for Ward 3. He emphasizes that the pay increase is a raise for the position, not specifically for the present mayor, Domenic Sarno.
“[There are] those who aren’t satisfied with the problems that exist in the city and think the mayor should do more, I certainly applaud and agree with them, but they’re two separate conversations,” Edwards says.
For his part, Sarno last month said he is staying out of the debate. But he pointed out that the mayor’s salary has not been raised in 16 years.
City councilors will also vote on a proposal to increase their own pay to nearly $20,000, a raise of $5,000. Edwards says he knows not all of his constituents will be happy about the pay hike.
“Unfortunately, any time you make this type of decision, somebody’s not going to like it and somebody’s not going to appreciate it,” Edwards says. “But I think it’s deserved. I think there’s some councilors who really do work hard, I think myself included.”
At a meeting earlier this month, the city council took a preliminary vote on the ordinances and passed them. Final votes are expected at tonight’s meeting, which begins at 7.
This story was written and reported by Brianda Reyes.
Photo via Flickr from JeromeG11.