Reactions mixed on Albertville mayor and city council pay raises

The pay raise won't go into effect until the first Monday of November.

Posted: Feb 26, 2020 7:45 PM
Updated: Feb 26, 2020 8:56 PM

Big pay raises for Albertville's mayor and city council are getting support from some residents, but others asking why that money isn't being used for other reasons.

The Albertville City Council passed the ordinance last Wednesday approving the pay raise.

The mayor will now be making $78,000 a year. That's more than a $10,000 increase.
City council members will also see a raise. They will be paid 20% of the mayor's salary, which means they will make $15,600.
They currently make $8,400.

"The mayor has done a lot for this city. If anybody needs a raise, I'm sure he does," Benny Dean said.

Dean says he doesn't understand why some people are against the mayor's pay raise.

"I can't really imagine that they would be upset as much as he's done for the city," he explained.

Those against the pay raise told WAAY 31 the money should go toward providing better pay for first responders and teachers.

WAAY 31 tried to bring those concerns to Mayor Tracy Honea. He said he would answer our questions, but didn't want to do an on-camera interview.

On the phone, Mayor Honea said city employees have seen a pay raise every year for the last seven years. He says his pay raise was to make the city council and mayor's pay comparable to other cities similar in size.

The mayor referred WAAY 31 to his statement on Facebook regarding the pay raise.

In it, it says he knows city employee pay is still an ongoing issue. He asks people to "please be patient with us as we work to ensure growth and prosperity for our city on all fronts."

The mayor says they had to make the decision on the pay raise now because the law requires pay changes to be approved at least six months before an election. He adds the pay cannot be changed for another four years.

The new pay raise will not go into effect until the first Monday of November after the election takes place.

In the Facebook post, the mayor says his door is "always open for citizens and employees" to discuss any concerns regarding the pay raise.

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