Request for salary hikes denied again

DOWNEY -- A controversial proposal to grant a 4 percent pay raise to more than 30 high-ranking city employees failed to pass this week after City Council members expressed concern surrounding the current sunken economy.It was the second time in three months the Council has rejected salary hikes for top management. The Council turned down a similar proposal in December. Mayor Pro Tem Anne Bayer introduced the latest request, which would have granted a 4 percent pay raise to 36 top city employees, including the city manager and several department heads. Bayer expressed her support for a similar pay raise for management last December, but the motion was struck down by the Council. At the same meeting, Bayer voted against a 4 percent raise for five secretarial positions. She did not return a phone call seeking comment. Bayer was joined by Councilman David Gafin on Tuesday in voting in favor of the latest proposal. Mayor Mario Guerra and Councilman Roger Brossmer voted against it. The deciding vote fell to Councilman Luis Marquez, but he abstained, saying he needed more information on the city's finances. If approved, the pay increase would cost the city approximately $220,000 through next year, according to a city staff report. ********** Published: March 13, 2009 - Volume 7 - Issue 47