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Syracuse Common Council to vote on giving itself, other city offices a raise

Syracuse City Hall on March 14, 2023
Ava Pukatch
Syracuse City Hall on March 14, 2023

The Syracuse Common Council will vote on giving itself and other city offices a raise.

Each councilor would see roughly a $3,000 raise — increasing their salary from about $31,836 to $35,000. The Common Council President's salary would increase from $35,020 to $38,000.

Councilor Pat Hogan said the new salary will be just below the pay for Onondaga County legislators and said the councilor salary is less than councilors in other big upstate New York cities.

"Buffalo makes $75,000 a year," Hogan said. "Rochester, I think, is up there, too. We have to be very cognizant of our city budget, you know, which is a structural deficit. But in actuality, we felt this was fair and equitable."

He also hopes it can help broaden the demographics of people who run for council in the future.

"If you look at our city council now, it's composed of people owning their own business who have flexibility in their jobs to attend all the city council meetings and to do all the work or people who are retired like I am," Hogan said.

It's not just the council who would get a raise. The city auditor's salary would increase from $66,693 to $68,000. Mayor Ben Walsh would see a $20,000 pay bump to an annual salary of $150,000.

The vote on the salary increases is slated for the February 5 council meeting. The last time the council voted on raises was at the end of 2019 — which included annual 2% raises for three years for the councilors.

Ava Pukatch joined the WRVO news team in September 2022. She previously reported for WCHL in Chapel Hill, NC and earned a degree in Journalism and Media from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. At UNC, Ava was a Stembler Scholar and a reporter and producer for the award-winning UNC Hussman broadcast Carolina Connection. In her free time, Ava enjoys theatre, coffee and cheering on Tar Heel sports. Find her on Twitter @apukatch.