• 72°

Danville finalizes elected officials’ salary increase

50-percent higher pay goes into effect in 2019

In a meeting that lasted less than two minutes, the Danville City Commission voted 3-1 Tuesday morning to approve an ordinance raising the salaries of the mayor and city commissioners.

With little discussion, Commissioner J.H. Atkins made the motion to approve the ordinance, which raises the salaries of the city commissioners from $6,056.04 to $9,084.06, and the salary of the mayor from $10,272.96 to $15,409.44, which represent 50-percent increases. The raises take effect Jan. 1, 2019, for those elected in the November general election.

Commissioner Denise Terry seconded the motion, which she, Atkins and Mayor Mike Perros voted for. Commissioner Kevin Caudill voted against the measure. Commissioner Rick Serres was absent.

The meeting was called only for approval of the ordinance; it ended shortly after the motion passed.

The ordinance had a first reading on April 26, when the 50-percent raises were proposed by Danville City Manager Ron Scott, who said the salaries had not been raised since 2006. The increases, he said, would put Danville in the 75th percentile, meaning 25 percent of comparable cities pay their commissioners more, while 75 percent pay their commissioners a comparable amount or less.

Scott said the raises can only be considered during an election year and can only take effect for the incoming officials who win the elections.

All four of the current commissioners are running for re-election and there are two challengers — Ronald Devrick and Charles Singleton. Mayor Perros is unopposed for re-election.

During the April 26 meeting, Perros said he felt it was important to have the “modest increase” so that those who seek the elected offices in the future won’t be only “well-established financially or those who are retired and have time to spare.”

During the initial discussion, commissioners also discussed a smaller increase, proposed by Serres, who suggested taking “baby steps” in increasing the salaries.

Serres and Caudill voted against the 50-percent raises during at first reading; Caudill also voted against Serres’ smaller proposed increase during the earlier meeting.