Greenville City Council members voted to increase both their own and the mayor’s salary at a special meeting on Thursday.
The mayor’s salary is now set at $70,000 for the position which is classified as a full-time post. The city council members salaries are now $20,000. The salaries were $54,505 for the mayor and $14,283 for the council members, giving a 28% increase for the mayor’s position and 40% increase for council members.
In a 4-2 decision, Council members Bill Boykin and Al Brock voted against the increases.
“Under the financial constraints we currently find ourselves in, I don’t believe it sends the appropriate message to the community to raise mayor and council salaries,” Brock said.
Council members James Wilson, Lurann Thomas, Lois Hawkins and Tasha Banks voted for the pay raises.
According to the 2017 survey of municipal salaries and benefits prepared by the Mississippi Municipal League, Greenville was the seventh ranked city in the state based on population, not including Jackson and some other cities that didn’t respond, but it’s mayor’s salary at the old rate was ranked 23rd in the state.
The increase would put the mayor’s pay in-line with Kosciusko, which was ranked 14th in pay rate in 2017.
The highest paid mayor in 2017 was Olive Branch’s mayor, who earned $132,683 with a population of only about 3,000 more residents than Greenville.
The report says Greenville’s city work force compiled 315 total employees, 266 full-time, which ranked it eighth in the state. Hattiesburg has the most with almost 700 total employees.
Greenville’s old city council member pay rate ranked it behind 23 other municipalities in the state. The new rate of $20,000, would rank it ninth in the same reporting year.
Other town pay rates are:
n Clarksdale: Mayor, $86,421 and council members, $24,050;
n Indianola: Mayor, $49,600 and alderman, $8,000;
n Meridian: Mayor, $80,000 and council, $20,000; and
n Ocean Springs: Mayor, $84,656 and council, $20,369.
The last pay raise for mayor and council members were more than 12 years ago. The last across-the-board raise for city employees was in 2018 and was 5%.