JAMESTOWN, NY (WNY News Now) – Jamestown City Council has agreed to follow an outside recommendation to increase salaries for both council and mayoral positions. However, with the increase in pay, some local lawmakers are seeking a stipulation.
The recommendation by the Salary Review Commission was to increase Council Member salaries to $7,000 dollars a year, the Council President to $8,000 dollars a year, and the Mayor’s to $82,000 dollars a year. With a total increase of $28,000 dollars.
Councilman At-Large Jeff Russell proposed adding a requirement that the mayoral position be the only employment that those in office can have.
“For this level of increase, I think the position must be treated as a full time job,” explained Russell. “Meaning that he or she that holds the office going forward should forgo any other paying employment or engagements. Unless City Council grants approval on a case by case basis.”
He goes on to say that a similar tactic was used when he was employed by the Jamestown Police Department.
“I came to this conclusion because when I worked for the City of Jamestown Police Department, if I wanted to engage in secondary employment, I had to officially write a letter to my chief of police at the time that I was looking to engage in secondary employment,“ said Russell. “And I had to get permission from my chief for secondary employment.”
Other council members seem to agree.
“It also eliminates conflicts of interest with outside employment for any number of reasons,” explained Councilwoman Marie Carrubba. “So, I would support that. I tend to agree. I think as government and problems become more complicated, it really requires full time and attention.
If the salary adjustments are approved, they will not impact current terms, which end at the end of this year. The new salaries instead would go into effect January 1, 2024.