Jul 8, 2005

A stipend for the mayor of Troutdale

This Tuesday night, the city council will be voting on a resolution to give the mayor of Troutdale a $500/month stipend. You may have read about this issue in the Gresham Outlook, where I was quoted as saying I'm still not sure how this transpired.

You see, during the last few minutes of the Troutdale budget committee, Councilor Norm Thomas made a motion to add $5000/year to the budget as a stipend for the mayor. The chair of the committee allowed no debate, and the motion sailed through. Only Dave Ripma and myself voted against this motion.

However, I did vote in favor of passing the entire budget which included this stipend. Now, the issue is before the city council to change Troutdale City Code and allow the mayor to receive a stipend.

I don't know how I'm going to vote on this yet. But here's what I said at the budget committee and it's what I'm going to say Tuesday night: When the mayor ran for office in 2004, he knew there wasn't any stipend at the time. He ran for office with the understanding that he would be a volunteer. If he couldn't afford the sacrifice of time away from his job, he shouldn't have run for mayor again.

I'll decide how I will vote on this after the councilors have discussed the issue. In any case, this isn't how Troutdale should operate. These things should not be decided behind closed doors before a meeting. It should have been fully discussed at the budget committee meeting.

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