Beaverton City Council decides on new mayor salary
The Beaverton City Council has decided on the compensation for mayor under a new city charter.
On Tuesday, Oct. 20, the council passed a resolution to set the new mayor's annual salary at $92,800. The mayor's compensation package also includes medical, dental and vision insurance, along with an annual cost of living adjustment of up to 2.5%.
The annual compensation number changed from the council's virtual work session the previous week. Previously, council members tentatively decided on an annual salary for the position at $85,000. They landed on that number after considering 60% of what a circuit court judge makes.
But at the virtual council meeting on Oct. 20, Councilor Marc San Soucie said he had contacted the Oregon Department of Justice to ask how much circuit court judges are paid now, and he concluded $92,800 was a more accurate figure.
City Councilor Laura Mitchell disagreed, saying she thought the salary of other Oregon mayors should be Beaverton's comparison point in setting the mayor's compensation.
"I want to stick to comparing apples to apples," Mitchell said. "The information that HR put together really highlighted mayors throughout the state. For me, it was comprehensive, and I'm not comfortable, especially after going from $80,000 and no benefits to $85,000 and all of these benefits. I would not budge on that number."
Originally, on Tuesday, Oct. 13, Beaverton's human resources director, Patricia Wieck, presented the city staff's recommendation of an annual total compensation of $80,000, based on the compensation that mayors of other cities earn.
But on Oct. 20, Wieck said she doesn't believe it is "unwise or unfair" for the council to peg the mayor's salary and benefits to those of a circuit court judge.
"I just want to go on record to say that it is not an astronomical wage," Wieck said. "It's a salary that will attract public service, and subject to 2.5% (cost of living adjustment), we'll get to where an average person would consider being able to afford life on a salary."
All council members present except Mitchell voted in favor of the resolution to set the mayor's salary at $92,800.
That's a significant cut — nearly $100,000 per year — from the mayor's current compensation.
Beaverton Mayor Denny Doyle, who is running for re-election against City Councilor Lacey Beaty, now makes $187,409 per year.
But the role of mayor is changing under a new city charter voters approved in May. Instead of a "strong mayor" system, Beaverton will have a more typical council-manager form of government. While mayor remains a full-time position, as of Jan. 1, 2021, the day-to-day administration of Beaverton City Hall will be in the hands of an appointed manager instead.
The Beaverton mayoral race will be decided by voters Tuesday, Nov. 3. Ballots are due by 8 p.m. Tuesday at an official drop site.
Washington County officials say Tuesday, Oct. 27, is the last day voters can mail their ballots, as ballots mailed later may not be received by Election Day.
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