The next Hoquiam City Council will get a raise

The Hoquiam City Council will be getting a raise, but not the current council.

On Monday night, the Hoquiam City Council voted to adjust the pay for council members. At their previous meeting,the council approved 3 percent annual pay raises over the next two years for some city staff and Councilman Paul McMillan proposed a similar raise for the council, saying that the current pay of $260 per month has been in place for a number of years.

The new salaries will be $275 a month, a $15 increase. This equates to an approximate 6% raise.

State rules under RCW 35A.12.070 dictate that the salaries of the mayor and the councilmembers shall be fixed by ordinance and may be revised, but any increase proposed by an elected official is not be applicable to the current term being served. Instead, the newly approved rates will only go into effect following the next elections.

This would apply to all current councilmembers, including Mary Stinchfield who was appointed to the council at the start of the meeting.

Including Stinchfield, 7 total council positions will be up for election in November with the pay increase starting for those positions in 2020.

Councilman Dave Wilson attempted to make an amendment on the motion, stating that councilmembers should not be paid if they do not come to meetings.

Councilman Greg Grun also attempted an amendment that would not bring any raises until the next budget cycle and review.

Neither motion was passed.

The motion passed by a vote of 9-2, with Greg Grun and Steven Puvogel voting no. Councilman Dave Hinchen was not present at the time of the vote.