City Councilor Joe Egli was right when he voiced concern over, and voted against, the recent salary survey for the city manager and city attorney positions with Keizer.
He voiced concerns about the process including step increases and the cities that were included such as Lake Oswego and West Linn, two cities that are decidedly more affuent than Keizer and a higher tax base.
Keizer conducts salary surveys to assure that Keizer’s city staff are being paid commiserate to what other like-cities pay their managers. That’s all well and good but Keizer should match itself with other cities that are more like itself financially.
Keizer has always prided itself as being a low cost city—frugal, if you will. With some salaries now topping $147,000 residents would be excused to ask themselves how that amount squares with low cost.
We do not begrudge any one getting a pay raise. We question the salaries at a time when many in the private sector are still feeling the financial effects of the Great Recession.
Municipalities use salaries as carrots to attract or retain talent. Surveys show that money is never the number one employee motivator; working conditions and career challenges beat money every time. If we want top talent let’s be sure we’re offering what really matters—a challenging position that allows one to use their creativity to complete the duties at hand. —LAZ