Friday, December 20, 2013
A pay raise is on the way for Georgetown Mayor Jack Scoville and members of Georgetown City Council but the stipend increase will not take effect until January, 2016.
By a vote of 4 to 3 Thursday night, council approved the increase but it will not be close to what was originally proposed.
Council members Peggy Wayne, Brendon Barber, Rudolph Bradley and Mayor Jack Scoville voted “yes” to the pay hike while Clarence Smalls, Paige Sawyer and Jeanette Ard voted against the ordinance change.
The original proposal was to increase the mayor’s pay from $7,500 annually to $24,000 and hike council’s compensation from $4,800 to $18,000.
That amount was not supported by most council members, so in the end it was agreed to increase the pay by 10 percent. As a result, the mayor’s pay will be $8,250 and council members will receive $5,280.
Scoville wanted the original proposal to be put in place.
“It’s not fair to those who want to run in the future to not be adequately compensated,” he said.
Bradley had recommended a 50 percent increase but that was not supported by Wayne who had the tie-breaking vote,
“I do not go along with the amount that is being asked for,” Wayne said. “I would go along with a 10 percent increase.”
Scoville said that “is not much of an increase” and asked Wayne if she would consider supporting the 50 percent suggestion. She said “no” to that request.
Barber said he felt an increase was justified because the requirements of council members is greater than in previous years, He said no one complained when county council and the school board received a stipend increase.
Bradley said, in response to some who have said Georgetown should pay the same as other places, “you cannot compare Newberry or Horry with Georgetown. Each is unique in what they do.”
He also emphasized the increase is for future council members.
Scoville said he supported the 10 percent increase once he realized it was the highest amount that would receive a passing vote.
By law a pay increase cannot take place until after the next municipal election which is in November 2015.