Elk Grove City Council Members To Decide on Their Proposed Pay Raise

March 9, 2015 | When the Elk Grove City Council meets on Wednesday night, they will face one of the thorniest issues facing elect...

March 9, 2015 |

When the Elk Grove City Council meets on Wednesday night, they will face one of the thorniest issues facing elected officials - whether or not to approve their own pay raise.

Toward the end of a lengthy agenda, the four council members and the mayor will decide if they are entitled to a 10-percent raise, or $80 a month, bringing their salary to $880. Salaries for part-time council members in general law charter city's are governed by California state statute and are based on population.

The item will be the third to last item heard on a lengthy agenda. The staff reports says "Staff recommends that the City Council consider introduction of an ordinance amending Elk Grove Municipal Code section 2.04.010 to provide for an increase in Councilmembers’[sic] salaries, as authorized by statute."

In addition to this possible pay raise, Elk Grove Mayor Gary Davis suggested at last week's special retreat meeting that each council member be given a full-time assistant. Davis's protege, Council Member Steve Ly, agreed with the mayor and also suggested giving each council member an expense account to conduct community outreach meetings.  

Council Member Hume disagreed with Davis and Ly's assessment and said when he had an intern, he struggled to find work to fulfill the 12-hours. Currently, Council Member's and the Mayor are allotted a 12-hour a week intern to assist them. 

If approved, the increased salary will cost the city $4,800 annually. 

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SteveB6509 said...

I think this is a good idea - they work very hard and while we might not agree with everything they do, they spend quite a bit of time for the City.

Connie said...

I agree with Steve. At least this Council, the original Council, hasn't billed the taxpayers for their home offices equipped with computers, fax machines, phone lines, supplies; not to mention weekly Rotary luncheons, luncheons out with city staff on a routine basis, double dipping of mileage, Master's Degrees of $16K and more.

The current Council even cut expenses on their dinners before Council meetings. The original Council would spend triple of what is currently spent.

So with all of that in mind, I think a small merit increase in two years is warranted.

Anonymous said...

I disagree. A 10% raise. Tell me what other local government worker has received anything close to a 10% raise. Hell, State and County workers are still trying to get back what they lost during the recession. Are these part timers really worthy of a 10% hike. Didn't they get a raise in 2012?? Again, what other local business leaders are getting such compensation?? part time work...equals part time pay. Trust me when I tell you they make out on their taxes when they write off hundreds if not thousands of dollars in "expenses" for their second job. I'm sure we can find others who will accept the 800.00 per month and give us more of the same feasibility studies; empty mall; lawsuits; snarky comments to citizens. It's not rocket science folks....quit whining.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget they are also receiving health benefits and pension benefits.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget the full-time assistants and expense accounts to do community out-reach meetings. I suggest they also consider a city-owned car filled up with city-paid gas... Detroit City Council offers that and just look where it took them.

Of course there is another way to look at this...could be fodder for future candidates at the next election. Be careful what you vote for, it c ould bite you in the butt in a couple of years.

Connie said...

Both comments above are correct. I have an email in to the city to ask if any of the Council receives heath benefits. If so, what is the monthly premium? If not, do they receive a cash value equivalent and the amount? I also asked what amount is put in a pension or deferred account each year. I know they receive a stipend for their cell phones, but I don’t know the amount.

None of these other benefits were mentioned in the staff report. Maybe they should have been so that there is complete transparency here.

Warren Buffett said...

Transparency is a buzzword used at election time. The only thing that matters is that the developers keep their impact fees at rock-bottom prices and never make them design upscale like they have to do in Folsom or Roseville. Satisfy those and you are/stay elected.

Anonymous said...

10% raise for a part time job? Seems excessive at best. This economy is still weak; slugging along at a snail's pace. I would suggest they hold back on raises until we see some quality jobs coming from the dais. Once they bring the jobs, then let's talk about raises. To date, I cannot really put my finger on one, impactful, economic driven; project of substance to which to hang our hat. I'm not thinking they deserve a raise, let alone a 10% raise.

Anonymous said...

No raises! Some council people give themselves raises already by spending campaign contributions on personal use!

Anonymous said...

Check any of their names under the website "Transparent California" and you will see that their combined salary and benefits is much more than $800 per month. As an example, Hume was paid $9,600 salary but a total of $20,087 including benefits. I believe they also get a health retirement account when they leave service, that pays up to $800 per month for the rest of their lives. Hopefully the request for information from the city included that item.

Steve L said...

I have to agree with many of the above posters.

Realize that our council members receive full medical benefits and after 10 years of service, that becomes LIFETIME medical benefits. Who gets this kind of benefit?
What is the value of lifetime medical benefits?
Most of us would take the council job for just the lifetime medical alone, forget the pay.
All this for a part time job. They also receive stipends and cell phone reimbursements, other costs are reimbursed as well.

Now they want a 10% raise? Who receives a 10% raise in government? Ask anyone working for a city, a county or the state agency when they last received a 10% raise, or two raises within the past two years. - Unless it's the legislature, it's not happening now or anytime soon.

They also want full-time paid assistants? The craziness and greed have no limits.

If these councilmen find they don't have time to oversee their duties as prescribed, perhaps they should step down and find another vehicle to offer their community time to.

Pat Hume has agreed there is no need for a full time assistants. He couldn't fill time with his 16 hr per week assistant when he had one. Keep in mind attending community functions and fund raisers are NOT required under their job titles. They should attend these as the public does, on their own time.

Time for the madness to stop.

Anonymous said...

TOTAL TRANSPARENCY! What is this "Other Pay" of $9000.00 for...anyone?

Connie said...

No report from Gill or Hobbs as yet. And I am bit miffed that the staff report was so disingenuous.

Now I am rethinking all of this after reading the comments. I had forgotten about the original Council voting lifetime healthcare benefits for themselves. Several of the current council members were very much against that vote when they were on the citizen side; but they didn't rescind those benefits after they were elected to the Council.

And let’s not forget the stipends the Council receives every time they attend a regional board and/or commission meeting. That started “Double Dipping Gate!”

With that, are we now talking $30K per year all inclusive? A far cry from the $800 reported out in the staff report. Shame on city staff for not being forthcoming to the public on what actual perks and benefit monies the Council receives.

So pleased other people pay attention! And they wonder why we do.

Anonymous said...

I believe that any discussion about a salary increase should include a discussion about benefits also. Full disclosure is always in the best interest of everyone concerned. How does the salary increase impact pension benefits and what exactly are those benefits?
Are there any other benefits?

Not requiring the City Manager to provide full employment costs at times like these makes one wonder just how much to believe those Council Members making their "transparency" promises.

Naomi said...

Yes, the total benefit package should be detailed and available for public perusal. All pertinent salary, reimbursement policies, pensions, health benefits and other perks available to them need to be laid out for full disclosure. Saying solely that they receive only $800 per month is not honest, but seemingly fraudulent on it's face.

Really? They receive "lifetime" health benefits for working part time? - That's totally insane!

If this fact alone was known to a majority of the public, there would be over 10,000 citizens filing to become the next councilperson. Think about health care costs especially after retirement. That's HUGE!

These men need to get to work and be glad they have the benefit package they have. Increased salaries? - Please!!! - They are greedy, just as Ms. Wheat has been saying all along.

What was once opinion has now become FACT.

Anonymous said...

This is proof the world is coming to its end.

This is just so wrong so wrong. These guys should be ashamed of themselves.

Connie said...

Responses to Questions regarding City Council Benefits

I received the following this afternoon from Kara Reddig.

1. Please provide a list of all benefits the Elk Grove City Council receives?
• See our website under Human Resources/Benefits/City Council Benefit Summary or follow this link: http://www.elkgrovecity.org/UserFiles/Servers/Server_109585/File/Departments/HR/Benefits_Summary CityCouncil.pdf

2. Do any of the Council members receive health insurance from the city? If so, what are the respective premiums? If not, do they receive a cash equivalent for opting out? If so, what is that amount?

• Each Councilmember may receive health insurance through the City or may opt out of health insurance and receive a $650.00 per month in-lieu payment placed in a 457 deferred compensation account for opting out. This deferral amount is reduced by the amount of any insurance premium should a Councilmember elect health insurance.

• Councilmembers are offered supplemental health insurance with premiums ranging from $549 to $646 monthly depending on the members current medical plan.

3. What amount is put in a pension fund and/or deferred compensation account for each Council member every year?

• CalPERS Employer contribution - Pension fund: $1610.16 per year.

• As noted above, the health insurance in-lieu payments are contributed into a deferred compensation plan for a total of up to $7800 per year, subject to any reductions for the cost of the premium should the Councilmember elect to have health coverage.

4. How much do the Council members receive as a monthly stipend for cell phone service?

• $50 per month for air time
• $50 per month for data service

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