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Linehan says city councilors are worth $105,000 a year, or 20% more than they make now

Linehan

The City Council on Wednesday gets to decide between competing salary increases: Council President Bill Linehan wants to give himself and his fellow councilors a 20% raise, to $105,000 a year, while Mayor Walsh is pushing for a 13.7% raise, to $99,500.

Councilors currently make $87,500, an amount that hasn't changed in six years. A mayoral compensation task force recently recommended a raise to $97,000, an amount Linehan and some other councilors, such as Frank Baker (Dorchester) denounced as an outrage and an affront to the hard work councilors do.

The council's meeting begins at noon in its fifth-floor chambers in City Hall.

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Comments

I'd rather these guys spend their time closing the Boston School budget gap with funding rather than cuts, instead of debating how big a raise they should get.

When the people who fund city government have no wage growth, the people who work there should get inflation raises not huge increases.

Walsh put a 13.7% salary adjustment on the table and Linehan wants more. Do you know what kind of raises we give our teachers, police and firemen... something like 1%, 1%, 2%, 2%, 2% over five years.

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1) There have been ZERO cuts in recent memory to the Boston School budget. At the absolute depths of the financial crisis I think there was one year where the budget was about flat (but I think the Feds kicked in a bunch to subsidize it - and now that that money has disappeared they say the budget is getting cut because temporary money turned out to be temporary). The school budget has gone up about on par with the overall budget - 4-4.5% per year for a long time - or almost double the rate of inflation - and this is for a system that serves about 1% fewer kids every year. If there is a shortage of money in the school system, it is due to mismanagement - not lack of funds.

2) Personnel costs consistently run +/- 70% of the budget. If the budget is going up over 4% - that means so are compensation costs. If salaries are lagging that is because other comp like health care and pensions are eating up the balance. In the private sector you are lucky to get a COL raise, health care has been slashed if you have it at all and pensions are a think of the past.

Core city employees do hard jobs - but teachers, firemen and cops are fairly compensated in their salaries and EXTREMELY well compensated when you look at total compensation. We are running the city's budget at an unsustainable pace - next economic slowdown - which looks to be 6-18 months away will be very telling.

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$105k a year wtf... I remember seeing a Boston City councilor 6 years ago at the Chestnut hill mall 1pm on a Thursday afternoon yapping away on his cell phone and browsing for clothes at the same time, all on the taxpayers dime. Now, I lived in Boston all my life and I know for a fact that Boston city councilors should be either in their own district or city hall during the weekdays not Chestnut hill,, this councilor was even keeping on the looking out to see if anyone was noticing him.

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Last two years in a row boston schools have cut staff and spending to close budget gaps. This year two or maybe three schools were closed, they proposed closing five originally.

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School budget was increased $56 million last year and another $37 million this year. Last year they added 280 employees (budgeted) and this year they have budgeted to reduce by 68 - out of 8600 employees total. Since 2012 they have added an additional 500 employees to the budget. They lost about 2% of students 2 years ago. This year vs. last was about flat.

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I'm not going to say they shouldn't be getting raises, but this system is out of whack. I'm sure some people would like to charge the councillors for the "privilege" of serving, while some councillors want department head money to go to meetings and do constituent service.

If they were smart, they would tie their raises to CPI for the metro area, and defer when needs be.

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Part of the whole push in this timetable has to be because if they don't do it now, before the new council is sworn in 2016, after this election- uncontested though it is for most seats- they can't rely on the farce / illusion that the councilors are not voting on their own salary, but the salaries of future councilors, as an escape from violating the state ethics laws.

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But I think it is safe to say that at least 11 of the 13 people voting on this raise will be receiving it come January 2016.

Then, of course, there is the mayor's salary. The council could just not give him a raise (yes, he says he won't take the raise anyway, but whatever) and he could retaliate in different ways, just like his predecessor did.

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Give them the raise - and then freeze the rest of the council budget so that each councilor gets one fewer staffer and they have to do all the grunt work themselves.

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On the flip side, perhaps the Council should be setting their own salaries so that they can be held accountable and scrutinized in exactly the way this has unfolded. That's how it works for Congress and I think the State House.

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They are linked to CPI or a similar metric.

Congress routinely votes not to accept their raises. It is a smart move politically but not wise in the long run (as are most political moves.)

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What's with all the 9's in the proposed salaries. It makes it look like they're trying to sell something.

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n/t

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I'll be the only one doing it, but at least I won't be supporting his raise.

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I try to stay politically informed. I go to all the local candidates websites. I read the local news. Sometimes I look at their tweets. But it's hard to make a good decision about who to vote for in local elections when no one takes firm positions on anything beyond generalizations such as "help working families".

So when a race is uncontested or I don't see how one person is better (or worse) then another I write myself in. Mini protest.

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"help working families".

Seems like the only "working family" Linehan is helping is his own.. and no one else's.

What a disgrace.. almost six figures for a city council person? really? I think I'm in the wrong field...

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It's hard work showing up at BBQs and baseball games.

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That's what I'm doing. Do you write your info in or do you actually print a sticker. I may print a sticker.

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Topics Boston City Council should have hearings on- but are not, instead focusing on their own enrichment: (Feel free to add to my list, which is not in any fully thought out order)

1. Gun violence among city's black teens/ young men (remember when police commissioner got dragged away from meeting on this topic so the council could focus on police horses or some such nonsense?)

2. BRA takings of taxpayer resources to avoid zoning restrictions for developers

2A. BRA diversion of what should be taxes into BRA accounts, instead of general tax fund, and complete mismanagement of the funds they do collect

2B. BRA exemption from city residency requirement and impact that non resident policy makers' decisions have.

2C. Lifting city residency requirement, with possibly public safety requirement remaining, since it's only enforced for least powerful employees and leads to widespread dishonesty in job applications for many (keeping parents address, claiming to live in extra bedroom, claiming to keep family in hingham while sleeping in parents extra bedroom...)

3. Recent BRA lawsuit where BRA sued the federal government in order to DEPRIVE the public of designated parkland at the end of Long Wharf (yes folks, city suing to force reduction of public land). How much spent on legal bills?

4. BRA designation of highly valuable properties as "blighted" as a way to deprive taxpayers of such property/ tax revenue / accountability

5. repeated mismanagement of BPS assignment lists - 8,000 student names listed on wait lists with no update until days before school

6. BPS repeatedly shifting deck chairs with what schools will be designated for closure, moving, renaming etc,

7. consequences of such repeated BPS mismanagement/ reshuffling on failure to retain engaged middle class families in BPS system.

8. consequences on city overall by failure to maintain engaged, employed, middle class parents and their children.

9. Awarding of NO BID million dollar legal contract paying DOUBLE typical hourly rate to Atty Tom Frongillo, who offered free legal services to legislators when city's chief legal counsel and current mayor were such legislators, on claim that he had specialized experience in casino gambling, when in fact attorney has no such experience. Oh but his defense of legislators during probation scandal didn't affect his selection at all. Nope.

10. Failure of city to take any meaningful enforcement action against landlords who gerry rig their rental properties and endanger the lives of students who live there, violating housing, zoning, fire codes.

11. Health, safety & financial implications upon city residents - particularly children's respiratory health - from failure of gas utility to repair thousands of leaks in the city.

12. Streamlining permitting processes so businesses can operate with predictability rather than on a who you know/ get an exemption or not basis.

My list could go on and on...
What other agenda items do folks think the council should be focusing on, INSTEAD if their own pay raise?

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Especially when you're fighting for a pay raise every few months.

Sidetrack:
Item 1 on your list was addressed by Bernie Sanders. I'll link to the video later tonight when I get home. It's still up on my screen on my home computer. I think his approach at decreasing gun violence will be effective.

Edit*
Adding my link. Skip ahead to 26min and sit through the 2 or so minutes. I think what he's saying is a good reason for why we have a high level of youth violence (guns or no guns):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOtT6OqZz4A

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Thank you! Compiling the list is a great service. Check out the Greed [backspacedelete] Green Sheets of Pending Council Matters available by email request at
http://www.cityofboston.gov/contact/?id=138

The Green Sheets include
. Sixty Day Orders,
. Matters Assigned for Further Action,
. Matters On the Table,
. Unanswered Section 17F Orders requesting information,
. Home Rule Petitions Not Responded to by the Mayor,
. Matters in Committees.

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Has Linehan made any other proposals, for anything, during this term?

I see councilors Wu, Pressley, O'Malley, Zakim, and Jackson constantly making proposals and suggesting ways to improve our community, and make Boston a better place to live.

I guess Linehan's responsibilities as Council Pres, preclude him from doing anything that benefits constituents.

I too, will also be writing in Boston_Res.

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City Council President's problematical Records Management practices keep Public Documents out of reach of the public. Will Boston City Hall, Boston City Council Office, Boston City Clerks Office release online for hard of hearing folks, for deaf folks, for all folks in searchable format the public funded a) Stenographic Record of Public Meetings of Boston City Council, release online the WGBH Media Access Group b) Captions from the webcasts and cablecasts of Public Meetings of Boston City Council, release online the c) Green Sheets of Pending Council Matters for the upcoming Public Meeting of Boston City Council. The Green Sheets include d) Sixty Day Orders,
e) Matters Assigned for Further Action,
f) Matters On the Table,
g) Unanswered Section 17F Orders requesting information,
h) Home Rule Petitions Not Responded to by the Mayor,
i) Matters in Committees.

More requests for the Public Documents would help via http://www.cityofboston.gov/contact/?id=36

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Linehan and Murphy need to be voted out. If their salaries aren't tied to the number of City Council meetings they attend, their salaries shouldn't increase at all.

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who will advocate on behalf of Boston's equestrian voters. Without Linehan who will Scot Brown call when he moves back to Massachusetts in preparation for his 2020 presidential run? These are the questions of our time.

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...is mindboggling.

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Linehan resembles a greedy human version of The Great Kazoo from the Flintstones. What a douchebag!

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but can pay for cell phones and car out of their campaign accounts.
never mind that credit card payments that they don't have to submit the transactions for

its all available at OCPF

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