Springfield City Council approves step 1 of mayoral pay raise - FOX Carolina 21

Springfield City Council approves step 1 of mayoral pay raise

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Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno is a step closer to getting a $40,000 raise.  

The City Council unanimously approved the first step in a three-step process to make his salary $135,000 per year.

Mayors in some cities significantly smaller than Springfield in Western Mass are making close to the salary that the mayor is making right now.

The mayor's position hasn't seen a raise in 16 years.

"Who works that long without a raise?" asked Springfield City Councilor E. Henry Twiggs.

Twiggs is just one of the city councilors who spoke out Monday night in favor of a $40,000 increase for the mayor.

"We're not voting for an individual, we're voting for the position of mayor," he said.

For years, the people running the city have been making $95,000 a year.

Recently the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce has made a push for more cash.

"It's a real tough job and we just thought that the investment in that person ought to be more than what it was," said Jeff Ciuffreda, president of the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce.

CBS 3 dug deeper into how Sarno's salary stacks up compared to those in the next three biggest cities in western Mass:

  • Chicopee: population 55,000; mayor salary $85,000.
  • Westfield: population 41,000; mayor salary $90,000, being increased to $100,000 next year.
  • Holyoke: population 39,000; mayor salary $85,000

CBS 3 also compared the numbers to some comparable sized cities in New England:

  • Providence, RI: population 178,000; mayor salary $112,500.
  • Bridgeport, CT: population 144,000; mayor salary $132,459.
  • New Haven, CT: population 129,000; mayor salary $127,070.

Monday night's vote brings the raise one step closer to reality.

"Given the duties and responsibilities in running a corporation with a budget in excess of $500 million, the salary needs to commensurate with the position to attract the best and most qualified," said spokesman James Leydon in a statement sent to CBS 3 Springfield.

The council also voted in favor of giving themselves a $5,000 per year raise.

That also still faces two more steps until it becomes a reality.

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