Fremont City Council approves 58% salary increase for mayor, 40% bump for itself

The Fremont City Council voted to increase the salaries of the city council members by 40 percent and the mayor by 58 percent, effective Nov. 4 of this year. It will be the panel's first pay increase in 12 years.

The meeting, which was covered by the San Jose Mercury News, revealed some council members were seeking a bigger bump.

Councilmember Vinnie Bacon and Suzanne Chan suggested numbers they thought would be reasonable. Bacon's suggestion was an increase from the current salary of $2,211 a month to $3,500, a 58 percent increase. Mayor Bill Harrison recused himself from the discussion, but not the vote, while Councilmember Raj Salwan did not take part in the discussion and voted against the pay increases.

The council members' salaries will see an increase from $1,407 a month to $1,970 a month, a 40 percent increase.

The council also requested, in a proposal brought forward by Natarajan, that staff review the council's salary in the annual budget cycle to see if the salaries could be increased at a cap of no more than 4 percent for each calendar year in conjunction with the consumer price index for the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose metropolitan area.

City of Fremont last increased the council salaries by adopting an ordinance in 2001 that bumped the mayor's pay to $2,211 per month ($26,532) and council members' salaries to $1,407 per month ($16,884 annually).

The 5-percent increase is non-compounded (5 percent times the number of years since last salary adjustment) and can only take effect when at least one member of the council commences a new term. Since the council's last salary increase took effect in 2002, the maximum allowable increase is 5 percent multiplied by 12 years.