Austin City Council considers 40% pay rise

The current annual salary for council members is $83,158.40 and for the mayor is $97,656.

AUSTIN, Texas – The Austin City Council will meet on Wednesday to discuss a number of budget-related items. Among them is a potential pay rise for the council members themselves.

Item No. 14 on Wednesday of the Council agenda is one to approve regulation Establishing salaries and allowances for the mayor and council members. The draft regulation provides for a salary increase of 40% for these people.

The ordinance would set the annual base salary for council members at $116,688 and for the mayor at $134,191.

The regulation states that the council’s salaries and allowances were last assessed in 2006, as a approved regulation set the annual base salary for the mayor at $67,981 and the annual base salary for council members at $57,736. Since 2006, the salaries of the mayor and council members have been adjusted to reflect the rising cost of living in Austin.

According to August 1 note Sent to council members by the Chief of Human Resources and Public Services for the City of Austin, the current annual salary for council members is $83,158.40 and for the mayor is $97,656. That means the new salaries proposed in Wednesday’s regulation would represent a 40% pay rise from 2022 to 2023.

RELATED: Austin councilors could amend the budget to include a $20 minimum wage

KVUE spoke to Mayor Steve Adler about the proposed increase.

“I think when you have county commissioners and county judges that get paid up to $160,000 and up, I know the people on this council work at least as hard as our peers on the street,” Adler said.

There were some opponents of the proposed salary increase.

“We are dealing with inflation, we are dealing with an affordability crisis that this council has directly contributed to, we are dealing with a public safety crisis that they have absolutely … almost steered. It’s just amazing,” said Matt Mackowiak, co-founder of Save Austin Now

The ordinance also provides for continued cost-of-living adjustments, saying the city will conduct a market study of council members’ and their staff’s pay in 2027 and every five years thereafter to determine whether pay adjustments are needed.

Some have brought to Reddit to express concern and concern about the proposed new salaries for the mayor and council members, with some noting the difference between the proposed amounts and the salaries of teachers, first responders and others serving the public.

KVUE reached out to other cities across the state to find out how much council members and mayors are being paid. Here’s a quick breakdown:

  • Council Members – $45,722 per year
  • Mayor – $61,725 ​​per year
  • Council Members – $60,000 per year
  • Mayor – $80,000 per year
  • Council Members – $62,983 per year
  • Mayor – $236,189 per year

The Wednesday council meeting was scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. This story will be updated based on what the Council decides.

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Laura Coffey

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