5 percent pay hike proposed for Marietta’s city manager
by Nikki Wiley
February 04, 2014 12:10 AM | 2572 views | 5 5 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bill Bruton
Bill Bruton
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MARIETTA — A handful of high-ranking city officials are up for a pay raise, and City Manager Bill Bruton could see a salary hike of as much as 5 percent.

The Marietta City Council will consider on Feb. 12, increasing the salaries of five appointed officials.

Four of the officials will get 2 percent raises, if approved. Those include Municipal Court Judge Roger Rozen, Municipal Court Solicitor Robert Donovan, City Clerk Stephanie Guy and Betsey Kelley, administrative assistant to Mayor Steve Tumlin.

The five appointees considered for a salary surge answer directly to the City Council and did not receive the same 2 percent raise the roughly 700 other city of Marietta and Marietta Board of Lights and Water employees got at the beginning of the year.

The biggest hike is proposed for Bruton, the city’s highest executive, who would see a salary increase from $178,506 to $187,500.

By comparison, Smyrna City Administrator Eric Taylor, who holds the equivalent of Bruton’s position at a similar sized city, is paid $128,775 annually.

Mayor Steve Tumlin said Bruton’s contract was set to expire in April and is also up for a four-year renewal at the Feb. 2 meeting.

“His was basically a full contract price,” Tumlin said.

The city held off on raises until a balanced budget was approved, Tumlin said. In June, the City Council passed a balanced budget of $48.84 million, an increase of 1.4 percent, or $690,443, over the previous year’s budget.

Raises were given in 2013 but were not given for three years prior.

“I’ve been there four years and the first three across the board there were none for this particular group of people,” Tumlin said.

Councilwoman Michelle Cooper Kelly touted Bruton’s devotion to Marietta.

“He is probably one of the best city managers around and he has worked very diligently over the years, especially during the downturn of the economy, to keep Marietta balanced,” Kelly said.

Kelly said Bruton’s dedication makes the jobs of elected officials easier.

“Five percent probably doesn’t even begin to say how much he’s valued and worth,” Kelly said.

Other council members agree the five city appointees are deserving of the same raise afforded to other city employees.

“They’ve done good work and, just like our other employees, they put their time and put their service in,” said Councilman Philip Goldstein.

Councilman Stuart Fleming echoed that sentiment.

“I think the world of those folks and think they do a great job,” Fleming said. “I support continuing to compensate them in a way that keeps up with the market and ultimately the voters will decide for certain positions in the years ahead whether they’re compensated fairly.”

The raises are needed to keep up with inflation, said Councilman Grif Chalfant.

The Cobb Board of Commissioners gave county staff a 3 percent raise under the budget it adopted in September.

Comments
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Pro Middle Class
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February 06, 2014
Not too bad for Bill, believe he started out at 125K, if the new pay raise goes through that’s a 50% increase in 14 years. The employees have had 27% in 20 years. Bill’s increase of course is at the top of the pay scale, most of the employees are at the bottom. Unfortunately for the employees promotional raises have been destroyed, merit raises don’t exist, and the across the boards are not really raises after inflation. Health care cost continues to go up, pension cost goes up but the benefit is based on falsely low pay. Mr. Chalfant stated the raises were needed to keep up with the cost of inflation. Well get out your wallet Mr. Chalfant, the cost of living in the last 20 years has gone up 59.6% in the south. It is time to catch the rest of the employees up.
Ask Them
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February 04, 2014
Ask his employees what they think of him. He only plays to the Council drumbeat without regard to anyone else.
What if
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February 04, 2014
A 10k hike for the city manager(5%) could pay for a 2-3% pay raise for 10 police officers or firefighters who put their life on the line daily. 10k a year is not all that much for a person making $175k a year, but $1,000 is a whole lot for someone making $40k a year.
A. Martin
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February 04, 2014
Are you SERIOUS? WHEN was the last time TEACHERS and ADMINISTRATORS...YES TEACHERS received a pay raise?

SERIOUSLY?! More favoritism granted in politics.

RIDICULOUS!
rjsnh
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February 04, 2014
If the city manager accepts this pay raise without a similar amount being made available to ALL city workers based on performance, then, the city manager is not a good leader and is not worthy of their best performance. The city manager will only be demonstrating the he has a much higher opinion of himself than his staff and workers, and that he is far more self centered than employee centered in his outlook. And, I must say, I am disappointed in the Mayor and Council for undermining good will in the workplace. Sadly, their judgement is but a reflection of what is going wrong in America, today....Greed at the top.
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