Council considers bumping up mayoral pay

Council considers bumping up mayoral pay

NORTH PROVIDENCE – Dozens of town workers earn more than the mayor, and now the Town Council is looking to change that dynamic.

After approving a $10,000 raise for the mayor during 2019 budget deliberations, from $75,000 to $85,000, the council was set to consider a resolution on the mayoral salary during its regular meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 7.

Town Council President Dino Autiello noted that this raise has nothing to do with the mayor needing more money, but is about considering the future and attracting the right candidates after Lombardi leaves office and having a salary in line with other communities.

“Comparatively, looking at the other cities and towns, and the job the mayor’s done and what the other mayors have done, it’s very low,” he said, citing comparable surrounding communities with higher pay for the top elected official.

The council is seeking a charter change raising the salary incrementally for the office of the mayor and making those raises permanent. Autiello said a couple of council members have raised the issue. The pay would go up next year to $95,000 and then incrementally increase over the next couple of years to $105,000, said Autiello.

The initial budget proposed last year had Lombardi earning $5,000 less than Chief of Staff Dick Fossa’s $80,000 before the council made the final change to $85,000.

The town has a $99 million budget now that requires extensive experience to manage, said Autiello, and who’s to say that budget won’t grow in the future.

“You have to have qualified people,” he said.

The council agreed last year to consider the matter in January 2020, which is what members are doing now, he added. As department head salaries increase, the gap continues to widen, meaning the mayor is making “significantly less money” than several department heads, said Autiello.

Public safety overtime pay has also pushed a number of police and firefighters into the same tier or better than the mayor, he said.

Comments

So the Mayor can't live on $85,000 a year so let's give him a $10,000 raise this year and another $10,000 raise next year. How many residents in North Providence will get a small, if anything, pay raise the year? In a lot of cases, taxes are more than their mortgage payments. But then again, it's North Providence.