SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The San Diego City Council on Monday unanimously rejected a proposal to raise their pay and that of the city's mayor to more than double their current salaries.
The city's Salary Setting Commission proposed that council members be paid $175,000 for the next two fiscal years starting July 1, and that the mayor receive an annual salary of $235,000.
"It's a joke to even think that we would vote for this," said Councilman David Alvarez. "I don't think anybody on this council ran for council thinking that they were going to make a lot of money. Nobody's here to get rich."
The mayor is currently paid $100,464 and council members $75,386. They haven't had a salary boost in nine years, according to commission Chairman Robert Ottilie.
"This is a serious problem that's been kicked down the road for too long," Ottilie said.
In the 2010 calendar year, 3,528 city workers took home more money than council members, including 33 lifeguards, Ottilie said.
Ottilie said he recognized the lack of public support for members raising their own salaries, and suggested instead that they offer voters a City Charter amendment that changes the method for fixing pay rates. Otherwise, council members could keep the power to set salaries and have changes take effect for each district when they leave office.
Councilman Carl DeMaio said a charter amendment, which could cost about $500,000, was premature.
Ottilie said the commissioners studied salaries in comparable western cities and took into consideration such factors as San Diego's high cost of living, inflation and the need to remain competitive to attract talented individuals.
"This really isn't about whether people that run for the office want the $75,000 or not," Ottilie said. "What this is about is determining why people can't afford to run for the office; who would be excellent people to put in that candidate pool for the voters to chose from."
Several dogs are in the custody of San Diego County, after a Lomita woman reported that her six dogs were attacked and some killed by a group of pit bulls.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College.
Thousands of people marched through downtown San Diego and San Marcos in the second annual Women's March Saturday. The San Diego event began at 10 a.m. at the downtown Waterfront Park on Pacific Highway, while the North County event began at 11 a.m. at Palomar College. The two marches were held in conjunction with other marches across the country.
The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight Friday, which prompted the closure of many federal operations, such as national parks and monuments and that included the shutdown of Cabrillo National Monument.
Chilly temperatures and scattered showers started the weekend. Temperatures at the coast and inland communities hovered around 60 degrees with some areas of San Diego County receiving rain during the morning hours.
A transient accused of fatally stabbing a man after they got into an argument near a 7-Eleven store in Poway pleaded not guilty Friday to a murder charge.
Coastal rail closures could complicate the commute for the thousands of people expected at Women's Marches set for downtown San Diego and San Marcos Saturday, though additional transit options are being made available.
A man arrested in the doctor's lounge at Sharp Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa after claiming to be an anesthesiologist pleaded not guilty Friday to a felony charge of treating the sick without a certificate.
People who bought new homes in Otay Ranch's Village of Escaya can start moving in Friday - later than planned but after the developer took steps to address methane found at the site.
Recent assaults by tactical teams on prototypes of President Donald Trump’s proposed wall with Mexico found their imposing heights should stop border crossers, The Associated Press has learned, a finding that’s likely to please security hawks but raise concerns about costs and environmental damage.