Friday, December 03, 2021

NorCo Council Approves Payraise For Exec, Controller and County Council

By a 7-2 vote, with one pass, Northampton County Council voted last sight to raise the salaries of the county executive, county controller and county council. Under the proposed ordinance, which was amended to increase the original proposal, the county's elected officials will be compensated as follows:

County Executive will be paid $125,000 (up from $85,000) per annum, effective January 1, 2026;

County Controller will be paid $85,000 (up from $75,000) per annum, effective January 1, 2024; and 

County Council members will be paid $12,500 (up from $9,500) per annum, effective January 1, 2024.

The County Council president will receive $500 in addition to the $12,500 annual salary.

The sole dissenting vote was cast by Tara Zrinski. She felt during the discussion that the salary for the Exec, in particular, is still too low. Bill McGee passed during the vote, and the Clerk failed to come back to him after polling the rest of County Council. 

In the last Exec race, the only Republican to run for Exec was a personal trainer.. John Cucick said that if the ordinance "encourages better candidates to to run, it will be worth it." He opposed a suggestion that the salary be tied to the CPI, arguing that is not "good government."  

For County Council and the Executive, this would be its first wage increase since 2010. 

The Northampton County Home Rule Charter prevents Council from giving themselves raises. They can set salaries for the next term of an elected official, but not the current one. Here's what it says.

"The County Council shall have the power by ordinance to set the salary of each elected official. No ordinance shall increase or decrease the salary of an elected official during his term of office. No ordinance which increases or decreases the salary of an elected official shall take effect less than one (1) year after its date of enactment."

When Lehigh and Northampton County adopted Home Rule Charters in 1978, they set initial salaries for their execs and legislators. The full-time county execs were paid $30,000 (Lehigh) and $35,000 (Northampton) while part-time legislators were paid $2,500 (Lehigh) and $4,000 (Northampton).

If these 1978 salaries were adjusted just for cost of living, our local county officials would be bringing home a lot more bacon today. Northampton County Exec McClure would be paid $154,889.84. Northampton County Council members would receive $17,701.70 salaries instead of the current $9,500.

"Everybody sitting here knows damn well he's going to veto it," said Kerry Myers of Executive Lamont McClure. 


Anonymous said...

Sounds like the gravy train is leaving the station.

Anonymous said...

When the payscale for non-union employees originated, employees were to get a step increase EVERY year until they maxed out. Then they only got COLA. That IS and HAS NOT happened in a long time. Also, the Personnel Policies and Procedures states that an employee review is to happen EVERY year. That does NOT happen. The County once again NOT following policies when it is convenient for them but don't let the employees not follow them.

Of course McClueless is giving all his buddies raises, as if they are the only ones that work so hard. Can't wait until they are ALL gone like he did when he took office.

Anonymous said...

Not for these council members to anyone else, does not take effect until next term. Can you read?

Anonymous said...

Maybe compare the salaries of the rest of employees of the county!!!

Anonymous said...

Wait a second boys and girls!!! What about the benefits included in their salary. He loves to run around talk about how much employees make because and in those benefits that only Northampton county has!!! What's the true salary like?? Lamont loves to point out for hourly employees. Wait what's good for the goose isn't good for the gander!!! Do as I say not as I do.

Anonymous said...

The adjustment for county executive should be after next election. It is a reasonable salary however insane to give to someone who ran knowing the salary. It should be held until next executive election. I could accept a nominal increase of say ten thousand but this is ridiculous

Anonymous said...

Funny give a CO a thousand dollars a year raise think Lamont thinks he's giving them the world. Be to get a 30% bump. What's a step 4.5 and he screams it's to much every year to give. So how many years would it take to get 30% at 4.5 % . Let's make it easy give the county employees an even 20% . I'm pretty sure he get benefits also.

Anonymous said...

Every County worker knows those at the top wouldn't succeed in their jobs without the clerical backup. Take away their office staff and see how well they do. It's time to pay the County workers what they're worth.