Ashton City Council considering pay raise of $100 extra a month

(Ashton City Courtesy photo) 

Mayor Tom Mattingly and City Councilmen John Kaelberer, Jerry Funke and Tadd Atchley discussed giving city council members a pay increase during Wednesday's city council meeting. 

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The Ashton City Council is considering giving itself a pay raise.

The city council met on Wednesday for its monthly meeting to discuss whether to do so.

City council members currently receive $350 a month while the mayor earns $700 a month for serving Ashton.

Ashton City Clerk Cathy Stegelmeier reported she had spoken to council members separately about the pay raise. She provided a summary of those discussions with the council during the meeting.

Stegelmeier then suggested increasing the mayor’s salary to $900 a month and increasing council members’ salaries to $450 a month.

“You need to discuss that, if that’s what you want or (if you want) to change the amounts,” she said.

Council pay raises are only allowed every election year prior to candidates putting in their papers to run for office, she said.

“This is not a wage you can change any other time,” Stegelmeier told the council.

Councilmen Tadd Atchley and John Kaelberer are up for reelection this year.

There hasn’t been a city council pay raise since 2007, Stegelmeier said.

“It was brought up in a budget meeting in 2019. The mayor at that time (Teddy Stronks) said ‘Nay, we don’t need to do this, this year,’” she said.

The council asked if Stegelmeier had reviewed pay rates with other city councils.

“All the other cities are talking about it,” she said. “I do know there was a story on Sugar City wanting to raise their salaries.”

Stegelmeier referred to a Standard Journal article of July 13 where the Sugar City Council discussed increasing Sugar City Council members’ monthly pay from $200 to $400 a month.

Stegelmeier asked if any of the council wanted to comment on a raise for the council.

“Not at the present time,” Councilman Jerry Funke said.

Stegelmeier reported the pay raise issue results from the Association of Idaho Cities recently sending a survey to cities asking what each pays their council members. Stegelmeier said she’s returned Ashton’s survey but hasn’t received the results of the survey back from AIC.

AIC Education and Training Coordinator Dawn Hall told the Standard Journal that the organization doesn’t release contents or the results of the survey to anyone other than AIC members.

“Only the members that respond to it will get the information. It’s a membership benefit to members who want that information,” she said.

Stegelmeier told the council she would send a copy of the survey to each council member to review. She also told them, they must make a decision on the pay raise prior to or during their next city council meeting scheduled at 7 p.m., Aug. 11, at city hall.

In order for the pay raise to become effective, state code requires Stegelmeier to publish the ordinance detailing the council members’ pay raise by Aug. 19 or within 75 days of an election in the Standard Journal. Should the council approve the pay raise, it will become effective Jan. 1.

For more information on the upcoming meeting call 208-652-3987.