I was waiting for the Daily Times to report the news contained in the ‘Receiver for the City of Chester Status Report’ that came out last week, but I guess they haven’t gotten around to it yet. I seem to get in less trouble when I comment on Daily Times articles then when I break the news myself. They’ll probably get around to it this week – or not.
In ‘Section E – Salary Reductions for Elected Officials,’ we learn that the Receiver feels as though ‘fundamental fairness requires that elected officials also contribute financially towards the goal of fiscal stability’ and has taken the steps to reduce the Mayor’s salary from $75k to $41k and City Council salary from $60k to $35k. He states that before 2020, two Council members and the elected Controller received $25,000 increases to $60k and the Mayor received a $34k increase to $75k. When the rest of the working world hopes for an annual 2-3% pay increase, I can see where these salary bumps seem a tad out of line.
The Daily Times did report on November 16, 2020 that… ‘Some also questioned the increase in salaries for the mayor and two council persons. In 2018, city council approved pay increases to two council positions and the mayor. By law, they could only change the salaries of the positions that were open for election.’
In that article, the Mayor says he took a pay decrease when he left Harrisburg to become Mayor of Chester and saved Chester money by not taking the mayor’s salary while he was still serving as State Rep earning $130k because of his committee member and chairman positions. I believe he’s entitled to write off the salary he didn’t take if his accountant instructs him to do so.
The Mayor also said that “When the other administration came in, the Republicans, they purposely reduced our compensation. It was something they did purposely … which is mean-spirited and advantageous.” I wonder if he feels the same way toward the Receiver now.