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Top Administrators Given Merit Raises

November 16, 2000|JENIFER RAGLAND

The city's top two administrators received annual pay hikes this week, despite a request by Councilwoman Linda Parks to postpone action until council member-elect Edward L. Masry joins the panel Nov. 28.

Parks voted against giving City Manager MaryJane Lazz a 4.5% merit-based raise and City Atty. Mark Sellers a 6.5% increase. The salary adjustments came after closed-session performance evaluations of the administrators, who are the only two city staff members working directly for the City Council.

The pay increases would be retroactive from July 8, the date the last pay agreement ended, Mayor Dennis Gillette said. Lazz and Sellers would have been eligible for a raise then, but it took until now for it to be approved, he added.

Councilman Dan Del Campo said waiting until after the council's reorganization on Nov. 28 to award the pay hikes would only "delay the inevitable," as employee contracts allow for annual merit raises based on evaluations.

Lazz will make $152,887 annually after the raise and Sellers will earn $122,560 a year.

The council also amended Sellers' contract to allow for a nine-month severance package as opposed to four months in his existing agreement to make it consistent with other top administrators around the state, officials said. Parks and Del Campo both wanted that portion of the matter delayed until the new council is seated.

In other council action, a Los Angeles law firm will receive $15,000 to wrap up investigations into alleged campaign finance violations filed against five of seven candidates in the Nov. 7 municipal elections. The money is in addition to $10,000 already spent on this independent counsel agreement in an effort to provide greater enforcement of the city's campaign finance law.

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