GLENDALE CITY HALL -- The City Council is looking to more than double
its monthly pay, but wants voters to decide when the increases would take
At issue are provisions in the city charter and the state government
code, which differ on when pay raises would be implemented and which
council members would receive them first.
Under state government code -- which permits each council members
monthly salary to increase from $800 to $1,746 -- the hikes would not be
applied during a council member’s existing term, but be phased in over
the 2003 and 2005 elections.
According to a provision in the charter, only Mayor Rafi Manoukian and
Councilman Gus Gomez -- if they are reelected in April -- would receive
pay boosts. The remaining three would not be eligible until and unless
they are elected to another term.
The council can repeal the charter provision, leaving it up to voters
to decide whether the entire council can receive the raises during their
“The only way to do it is to let the voters decide,” Councilman Dave
Weaver said. “Put it on the ballot and if [the public] wants to grant it
to us if it’s deserving, then we all equally get it at the same time.”
The council decided late Tuesday to wait a week to proceed so they can
discuss repealing the charter provision.
In addition to the proposed salary increases, Councilman Bob Yousefian
also suggested eliminating a $340 monthly car allowance each member
receives for serving on the Redevelopment Agency in favor of a $2,000
“I don’t think that’s an exorbitant amount of money if you look at the
amount of time we spend in here,” Yousefian said.
Council members, who are not paid a stipend for serving on the Housing
Authority, favor a $50-per-meeting stipend allowed in the state code.
Resident Carol Sussman believes the council deserves a pay hike
because of the time members spend representing a city that has grown in
size and responsibility.
“We must pay our City Council a living wage, not maintain them on the
poverty level,” Sussman told the council.
“I think everyone deserves it,” he said. “I think the city has changed
and I’ll go along with it.”