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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Which Pol Will Forgo a Pay Raise?

Posted By on Wed, Apr 20, 2011 at 9:00 AM

Or don't take the money and run
  • Or don't take the money and run

Yesterday, SF Weekly told you about the amazing news that your elected officials were looking forward to getting pay raises -- despite the city's $300 million budget deficit.

We wondered whether this would upset voters, who will experience yet another round of unfortunate cuts to city services, including health programs and homeless services. We know that it has -- at the very least -- riled up political candidates, who are using this as fodder for the election.

Former Supervisor Michela Alioto-Pier, who is now running for mayor, fired off a letter to the city supervisors and mayor yesterday afternoon, demanding that they give back their pay raises.

On Monday, the Civil Service Commission signed off on salary increases for the city supervisors, the mayor, and the city attorney. Right now, city supes take home $96,549 annually, yet the commission is giving them a roughly $2,000 raise. The city attorney will make off with an extra $4,000, while the mayor will get a $5,462 raise, bringing his salary to $252,935 annually.

We noted yesterday that even though voters approved these raises, that doesn't mean supervisors have to take them.

"The total amount saved by giving up the raises may be small compared to the deficit," Alioto-Pier says. "But city leaders need credibility when they ask San Franciscans to make sacrifices -- there have to be sacrifices at the top too."

Well, so far only one supervisor has committed to dumping his pay raise. David Chiu -- who happens to be running for mayor -- told the Examiner yesterday that he will not be taking the pay increase. 

"While it won't balance the budget, we need to lead by example during these tough times," Chiu says.

Leading by example -- now that's a good mayoral platform.

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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