Mayor presents new recommendation on council stipends

Mayor presents new recommendation on council stipends

By Scott Olson

For the past month the Creswell City Council has been discussing the idea of implementing a stipend for the mayor, council president and councilors. During Monday night’s City Council Work Session the discussion continued as Mayor Dave Stram presented a revised stipend recommendation to the council.

Previously the council was considering a monthly stipend of $300 per month for the mayor, $225 for the council president and $175 for city councilors.

Mayor Stram said after talking with people around town and looking at the data City Administrator Michelle Amberg has collected on 20 cities that offer stipends, he decided to revise the stipend policy to provide all councilors and the mayor with an allowance of $75 per month allowance to offset the costs of maintaining internet access and a home office.

All councilors would receive an additional stipend of $75 per month, while the council president would receive $100 per month and the mayor would receive $150 per month. The total monthly amount would be $1,150 and the total yearly amount would be about would be $13,800, down from the previous suggested total of $16,800.

Mayor Stram said this does not take into account PERS and federal taxes, which still keep the yearly stipend total under the $21,000 budgeted amount.

Mayor Stram also suggested the city council stipend policy would sunset after three years, on June 30, 2020.
“In three years it will go away and the council will bring it up and discuss it again to see how it has been working, Stram said.”

“I personally appreciate the thought you put into this. I tend to agree that having the stipend policy the way we had it was probably a little more than what I think the public would like to bear and feel good about,” council president Richard Zettervall said. “I appreciate the fact that we will all get a technology allowance and each gets a stipend on top of that. I personally like the fact that the councilors and the council president are closer together. I thought it was a little too far apart last time.”

Councilor Gary Mounce said he was satisfied with the added sunset clause, but he thought that the stipend amounts presented previously were adequate.

Councilor Martha McReynolds Jr. said she agreed with Councilor Mounce that the previous stipends seemed fine enough and not overly generous, but she does like the lower amounts.

Mayor Stram said a vote on stipends will be taken at the City Council meeting on Monday, Aug. 7.