Park City leaders approve their own raises |

Park City leaders approve their own raises

Officials want to revisit compensation levels

by Jay Hamburger

The Park City Council on Thursday approved 2 percent raises for the slate of elected officials. The City Council anticipates engaging in a broader discussion about compensation for elected officials, which is seen as a financial barrier for some people seeking elected office.

The five members of the Park City Council on Thursday night approved raises for themselves and Mayor Jack Thomas, always a delicate matter as they weigh the time and duties required of an elected official against the broad ideal of the meaning of public service.

The raises amount to 2 percent, the same increase applied to pay ranges throughout the municipal ranks as part of the City Hall budget that is expected to be approved shortly. The mayor's office will command a salary of $44,477.16 annually while the City Councilors will bring home $22,975.56 each year from City Hall. The new salaries go into effect on July 1.

Each of the elected officials is also eligible to receive family health-insurance benefits from the municipal government. They have the option to receive cash in lieu of the insurance coverage. The cash equivalent is $20,239.20 per year.

The compensation of Park City's elected officials has long been a touchy subject for incumbent mayors and City Councilors. The ones in office are sometimes hesitant to vote for significant raises based on political sensitivities. But there has also been concerns among the elected officials that the compensation could be a barrier to potential mayoral and City Council candidates who are less fortunate.

Nobody testified prior to the unanimous City Council vote approving the raises.

The elected officials, though, engaged in a brief discussion about compensation, and it appears there will be more talks later. City Councilor Nann Worel said the compensation is a "barrier" and a "real deterrent" to some people considering campaigning for elected office. Worel said she wants the City Council to revisit the issue outside of the budget talks.

Recommended Stories For You

It was not clear when the City Council will address the issue again.

The City Council on Thursday also approved salary ranges for statutory positions within the municipal government, including Park City Manager Diane Foster, who will earn up to $159,901 annually, and Park City Attorney Mark Harrington, who will earn up to $153,108 per year.