The Clovis City Council decided Monday to give its members a raise, but pared it back when members decided their raises shouldn’t exceed what they gave to city employees.
The measure will increase members’ salaries by 6 percent, from $1,289 to $1,367 per month. The raise will take effect after the next City Council election, in March of next year.
Council salaries were last adjusted in 2014. State law allows for an increase of up to 5 percent a year, so a raise of 10 percent, to $1,418 per month, initially was proposed.
But Councilman Bob Whalen said council salary increases should be consistent with the 3 percent annual raises received by other city employees over the past few years.
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“I don’t want us to be in a position where we’re saying, ‘Salary increases for us at this amount, but you guys have to take less of a salary increase,’ ” Whalen said.
The modified raise was unanimously approved.
Also on Monday, the City Council:
▪ Appointed a new member of the city’s personnel commission who was a political consultant for Mayor Nathan Magsig’s successful campaign for Fresno County Board of Supervisors. Magsig recommended Darren Rose for the commission to fill the term of Tom Miyake, who resigned earlier this year.
Rose was selected from three applicants after interviews with Magsig and General Services Director Robert Ford.
Though Rose was paid $5,000 for consulting on Magsig’s successful bid for Fresno County supervisor, Magsig last week told The Bee he didn’t believe there was a conflict of interest.
Rose’s position on the personnel commission will last until May 2018 and is unpaid.
▪ Revised a policy that spells out when staff and appointed board members must take a leave of absence or resign if they run for public office.
Under the revised measure, any city employee will be automatically placed on leave of absence, and any appointed board member must resign, the day they submit a Candidate Intention Statement with the Fair Political Practices Commission, which allows them to start raising campaign money.
Assistant City Manager John Holt said the change will prevent potential conflicts of interest. Employees and board members serving the city would be restricted from raising money for an election while serving the city.
Whalen said he worried about placing restrictions on board members’ or city employees’ ability to raise money while council members held regular fundraisers.
Councilwoman Lynne Ashbeck said the elected status of council members separated them from appointed board members.
“They serve at our will and not the public,” Ashbeck said.