Cape Coral commissioners set to discuss possibility of pay raises

Reporter: Taylor Wirtz Writer: Elyssa Morataya
Published: Updated:

Anything having to do with money and Cape Coral City Council is a hot topic of discussion these days.

The council’s decision late last year to give themselves stipends caused an uproar among voters who felt they had no say in the decision.

“I don’t believe that you should just arbitrarily give yourself more money,” said Cape Coral resident Karen Ewing. “That’s just not really how it works.”

Now, people in Cape Coral will have a say as the council discusses a referendum for voters to decide if the mayor and council can establish salaries and compensation through an ordinance.

Councilman Tom Hayden thinks that should’ve been the plan all along.

“It was always my belief that salary should go back in front of the people that elected us,” said Hayden.

Wednesday morning’s committee of the whole meeting will continue the referendum discussion that started at the last meeting and look at four options for deciding compensation.

The first lets the council decide each year how much they will be paid.

The second option would give the council and the mayor a set income, with the opportunity each year for a ten percent raise.

The third proposal would base the pay on the wages of those in similarly sized cities in Florida, adjusting the compensation to the 75th percentile of pay in those cities.

The final choice would be an amount based on population.

Each option would ultimately still increase the council’s pay, Something Karen Ewing says she isn’t pleased with.

“You’re just handing it right back to em,” said Ewing, “If you want more money, then go find something else to do.”

Wednesday’s committee meeting starts at 9 a.m.

Nothing will be voted on, but if the council isn’t able to agree on one proposal, it may not make it onto the ballot in time for voters to have a say this fall.

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