Erie City Council approves resolution to increase pay for council members

The Erie City Council meeting on Aug. 17 was a point of conversation for a contentious resolution, a raise for city council members starting in 2024.

We were at the Council Chambers for more on the ruling on the changes.

The Erie City Council voted to pass the resolution proposed by Councilwoman Flores. This increases the wages of council members with the vote being five to two.

Tensions were high in City Hall as several residents came to voice their concerns about doubling the salary of council members.

Those opposed argued that council members are public servants who shouldn’t be concerned with a raise like that.

Another individual said that homeless individuals in the community should be helped with the funding.

One person who identified as a former member of the U.S. Army called the idea “despicable.”

Of the council members, Council President Liz Allen hoped going into the meeting that another solution could be reached.

“I’m kind of hoping that the council might be able to look for some kind of compromise on this. I think that a requested double pay from someone who is in her first eight months of office might rub some people the wrong way,” said Liz Allen, City Council President.

The salary of council members is something that has remained stagnant for nearly 40 years, and some community members recognized the need for change.

One resident that spoke came to support this resolution saying that investing in the future of city council is worthwhile.

Councilwoman Jasmine Flores, who sponsored the resolution, echoed that sentiment and added to it saying that a pay increase will help add diversity for the council and incentivize qualified individuals to commit to service.

“In order for us to be able to give all community members an opportunity to run for this office, it needs to be compensated a little bit more than what it currently is. $6,000 for the whole year is not adequate considering how much time you have to genuinely put into this position,” said Jasmine Flores, City of Erie Councilwoman.

Flores added that she was not concerned about how proposing this resolution would impact her legacy in city council and that she is excited to continue finding ways to support the Erie community throughout her four year term.

Those who opposed the resolution were City Council President Allen, as well as Councilman Maurice Troop.

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When all is said and done, the new wages will look to become $10,000 per year for council members and $12,000 per year for the president up to from $6,000 and $7,500 respectively.

These changes will go into effect in 2024.