City Council Has No Good Reason To Consider Pay Increases

There is no good reason why the Jamestown City Council should seriously consider increasing the salary for the mayor and the City Council right now.

Three mayoral candidates have stepped forward despite the supposedly subpar wage the city pays its mayor. There are many contested races for the City Council despite the pittance council members make. It’s hard to say that the pay needs to be increased to get people interested in running for office in the city.

The bigger issue, though, is the city’s constant cry of poverty when it comes to pay for city police officers and firefighters. A city that has reached its state constitutional taxation limit while considering an appeal of 2 percent pay raises for police officers mandated by a binding arbitration decision should not even consider raising the wages for elected officials. No leader would tell the rank-and-file that there is no money for pay raises and then give the leadership a raise. It doesn’t matter how long elected officials haven’t had a raise, nor does it matter what other cities are paying their elected officials.

Jamestown’s financial mess is of its own making. Until that mess is taken care of, then elected officials shouldn’t add to it by one red cent by increasing their pay.

With that said, if there are no increases for the mayor or City Council, then when it’s time to negotiate again for police officers and firefighters, then those unions should remember the city declining their own raises and not ask for increases on their end.