Marietta mayor, council salaries to go up in 2018

Marietta Mayor Steve Tumlin broke the tie Wednesday to increase salaries of the next mayor and council members when their terms begin on Jan. 1, 2018.

Their salaries have not changed since 2006.

Councilman Philip Goldstein said, “We’ve kept our salaries lower compared to other cities. It’s a raise for the next term.”

The mayor’s salary will increase from $18,000 to $25,200 plus $5,000 for serving on the Board of Lights and Water.

Salaries of council members will rise from $13,000 to $18,900.

Agreeing with Tumlin were Councilwoman Michelle Cooper Kelly and Councilmen Stuart Fleming and Goldstein.

Fleming said, “I think it’s low for the work all of us do. It’s definitely 25 to 30 hours a week. I’m for bumping up to attract quality people.”

Opposed were Councilmen Grif Chalfant, Andy Morris and Johnny Walker.

Not opposed to the mayor’s salary increase, Chalfant said, “The mayor’s salary is egregiously low, putting in twice as many hours as we do.”

As for the council members, Chalfant said, “We are paid very well with all the benefits that come along with that,” wanting the council members’ salary to increase from $13,000 to $15,000 instead of to $18,900.

Kelly noted the city is doing well financially now. “We just voted to cut the pension by half, and the residents will get $50 back. This increase will benefit the next council,” she said.

City employees also will receive a three percent pay raise as a result of the budget approved Wednesday.

Tumlin said, “It’s awkward to vote yourself a raise. Why some mayors make $40,000 I have no idea.”