From the Martinez Gazette: "COMPARISONS
In comparison to Martinez public employee salaries, neighboring cities such as Benicia, Antioch and Lafayette paid their top bosses over the $200K mark.
Benicia City Manager James Erickson earned $237,514 in 2009, Antioch City Manager James Jakel earned $218,805 and Lafayette City Manager Steven Falk earned $250,026.
“The proper level of compensation is typically set in relationship to the breadth and complexity of the responsibilities of the position, length of experience, the level of education required, comparisons to cities of comparable size and with similar services, and other relevant factors,” said League of California Cities Executive Director Chris McKenzie. “Cities frequently survey other similar cities to make sure they are paying within market rates. We are unaware of any city in the nation where salaries of [the Bell, CA] level are paid for comparable positions.”
Lafayette’s Falk recently blogged about the Bell scandal, saying “[Bell’s ousted city manager Rizzo] and his exorbitantly paid management team inadvertently provided unexpected coverage by making Lafayette’s staffers and just about every other public servant in California look low paid.”
“As City Manager,” Falk went on to say, “I am the full-time professional chief executive officer of the municipal corporation, and the City Council serves in a capacity equivalent to a corporate board of directors. Acting in that role, the Council sets my salary, taking into consideration such things as performance (we have a strictly merit-based salary system); competitive position in the market place (we conduct salary surveys to determine proper relationship to other similarly situated communities); and the City’s financial position.”
Let's see, we have a bunch of small California cities that are paying their chief executives over $218,000 each and then they try and justify their salaries. Meanwhile, California and it's cities are going broke and now we know why.
And yet by Bell, CA. standards, they are underpaid.
Democratic politics at work.