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Readers Say No to Mayor's Proposed Pay Raise

Several Melrose Patch readers said they do not support Mayor Rob Dolan's proposed 26 percent pay raise.

After asking our readers if they supported Mayor Rob Dolan's proposed 26 percent pay raise, a majority said they do not support the proposal.

The Melrose Appropriations Committee will review Dolan's proposal at 7:30 p.m. Monday at City Hall. 

In a Dec. 26 letter to the board, Dolan asked for a pay increase from $99,896 to $125,000. In a Jan. 15 letter to Aldermen, the mayor said, "I respectfully request that this Honorable Board amend Melrose Revised Ordinances, Chapter 48-1. Mayor. Part A. Salary, to read as follows: Effective January 1, 2014, the salary for the position of Mayor shall be $125,000 per annum.'"

In 2010, Dolan submitted a request to aldermen for a pay raise that would have started in 2013, as his salary would have increased 1 percent to $99,896; in 2014, it would increase 7.7 percent to $107,569; and in 2015, it would increase 2 percent to $109,721. However, his request failed to garner enough support from the board, as he ultimately received a 3.5 percent raise in 2012 and a 1 percent raise in 2013, bringing the total salary to $99,986.

Melrose Patch Readers Say No to Mayor's Pay Raise Proposal

While Dolan has received backing from members of the Melrose Chamber of Commerce and others, Melrose Patch readers do not support the mayor's proposed salary increase.

"A $25,000 pay raise? Seems like a bit much..." wrote reader Nate. "You have to be kidding me. 
He is either out of touch with reality or is just arrogant," added reader cliff webb.

Reader luckyfreeman wrote, "Nice taxpayer funded (proposed) pay hike ... (while) everybody else is struggling to make ends meet." Fellow reader S/O Costa agreed, saying, "I'm sorry, but I cant get behind any one getting a pay raise ... sorry no raise for me, you shouldn't get one either."

Meanwhile, reader John Fri said, "These government CEOs are greedy! I'm tired of the greed, CEOs like this guy are the problem!"

One reader said the economy still has not improved enough to merit Dolan's request for a pay raise. "The economy is still in the tank, however, and if we could not afford it in 2010, I don't see how (Alderman John) Tranmontozzi or anyone else can say that we can afford it now, particularly where in 2010 Dolan was asking for (7.7 percent) in 2014 plus 2 (percent) in 2015, whereas now Dolan is asking for 26 (percent)!"

While the majority of readers were not supportive of Dolan's proposal, one reader did back the mayor's request.

"Anyone who attended (the) State of the City address by Mayor Robert Dolan at Memorial Hall would have (no) difficulty in voting for his salary increase based on the extraordinary progress our city has made in so many different areas of quality of life since he was elected Mayor over 11 years ago," wrote reader MFD. "He continues to invest much personal time and energy into making Melrose one of the best run cities of the Commonwealth and one that all of us continue to be proud to call our city."

Roy Bauer January 29, 2013 at 12:56 AM
Alice, you said it well. Melrose should pay its mayor a salary on a par with similar cities and towns. Additionally, Rob has done a great job as our mayor ... he listens, he is available, he cares, and he follows through. Give his his deserved and earned raise!
Scott Sawyer January 29, 2013 at 09:16 AM
ask for 26% at the end get 10% and everyone is happy, this is just a game
brbos1 January 29, 2013 at 01:25 PM
There are people who work under the mayor that make more than he does. He is the chief negotiator with unions and other small city mayors make more money. I think after 12 years as mayor and everyone can agree he has done a competent job overall, a salary of $125,000 is not unreasonable.
William Trudeau January 29, 2013 at 05:15 PM
The mayor should get the same pay raise as the all city workers not 25%. Mary Ann Long is comparing his salary to surrounding communities. If the Mayor gets his raise by this comparison than the underpayed (compared to surrounding communties)Police and Fire Dept should gets their raises by the same methods
Myron Dittmer February 01, 2013 at 04:13 PM
Dave.....you know that the Chamber is made up of independent business leaders in the community......who are more concerned about the health of their businesses than being friends with the Mayor. Their livelihood is based on profit not friendship with the Mayor......and once this is clearly understood, your comments make little sense. Any business operating in a community where the climate is financially weak, where city leadership is lacking, where there is a diminished quality of life, would not support any salary increase for a Mayor.....however, this is not the case we find in Melrose. Therefore, these business leaders see a real return in such an investment if not for this Mayor then certainly for future Mayors. A city Mayor's job is unique and no other position in our city has such diverse responsibilities....you might say that "the buck stops with the Mayor".......and as such his position needs to be treated differently than all other union-protected positions.

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