No raises for Middletown council or mayor

MIDDLETOWN – Town Council members at a Monday work session voted to forego attempts at a raise.

The last time council members or the mayor are believed to have received a raise was in the late 1990s, Mayor Charles Harbaugh said.

“It has come up four times since 2010,”  but has never moved forward, he noted.

Council members earn $1,200 a year and the mayor earns $2,400 a year as specified in the town charter.

The town charter would have to be changed to allow for any pay increase. A legislator would be needed to sponsor the change and take it before the General Assembly, town attorney J. David Griffin told the members in attendance.

“But be careful, they can make changes not asked for; other towns had things changed that they did not want,” Griffin said.

“In most cases, it does not happen but I want to let you know all the risks,” Griffin told council members.

Any increase that would be approved would not take effect until the beginning of the next session, meaning for some a pay increase would occur in two years –  depending on the next scheduled time their seat would come up for election.

George Smith and Scott Fink voted to move forward with the raise.

It was defeated, however, when Jeffrey Pennington, Carole Snyder Jones and Carolyn Aliff voted against the raise. They said they did not feel the need for more money.

Thomas Simon abstained from the vote.