County Council OKs salary hikes

County Council salaries will increase to $20,000 from $12,500, councilmen have decided.

The County Council voted 5-2 last week to approve the 60 percent salary increase. The pay increase for councilmen is the second since 1979.

Voting in favor of the salary hike were Chairman John Campisi, R-south county; Councilman Skip Mange, R-Town and Country; Councilman Hazel Erby, D-University City, Coun-cilman Kathleen Burkett, D-Overland; and Councilman Michael O’Mara, D-north county.

Opposed were Councilman Kurt Odenwald, R-Shrews-bury, and Councilman Greg Quinn, R-west county.

Salary increases for councilmen in Districts 1, 3, 5 and 7 will be effective Jan. 1, 2007, for candidates elected in No-vember 2006. Salary increases for councilmen in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be effective Jan. 1, 2009, for candidates elected in November 2008.

The council voted last month to approve legislation to increase the salaries of the county executive and the county prosecuting attorney. The salary of the county executive will increase to $140,000 from $125,000 and the salary of the prosecuting attorney will increase to $135,000 from $120,000. The increases for the county executive and the county prosecuting attorney will be effective Jan. 1, 2007, for candidates elected to the posts in the November 2006 election.

The prosecuting attorney’s salary last was increased in 2000, as was the county executive’s salary. Those increases — a nearly 40 percent hike for the county executive and a nearly 35 percent raise for the prosecuting attorney — were effective Jan. 1, 2003.

Campisi previously told the Call that he supported the proposed pay increase for councilmen.

“I think that the council members deserve some sort of pay increase because of the fact that we haven’t had one since 1982 or 1983 and I don’t think it should go up every year. I honestly think it should stay there for a while, maybe for eight years or something like that, then they should get some kind of increase …,” he previously said.