Mayor Tommy Battle informed City Council this morning of his intent to veto the pay raise approved at their meeting Thursday night, according to a press release from the city of Huntsville. This is Battle’s first veto in his 11 years as Mayor of Huntsville.
“I have said I am satisfied with my salary and I knew what it was when I went into public service. My focus remains on our 2,100 employees and the job I do as Mayor. I deeply appreciate the intent of Council."
Several people told us they think it's good Mayor Battle wants to keep his current salary, but for city council, they should take a look on what's happening right in their city.
"In this economy, I'd be happy with $130,000 a year...If you look around, you'll see an awful lot of people that have to work many, many years to see what the mayor is making now, so that's something to take into consideration," said one taxpayer.
From Thursday night:
The Huntsville City Council voted 3-2 on Thursday to give Mayor Tommy Battle a pay increase of 32 percent.
The resolution was amended to exclude a pay increase for city council that would have come along with the mayor's raise.
Councilwoman Jennie Robinson proposed that city council members should not get a raise along with the mayor. Her argument was that the council members are public servants and that it wasn't right for them to get the raise.
City Council President Devyn Keith and Councilman Will Culver argued that the amount of work they put in as city council members means they were deserving of the raise.
Mayor Battle said, "When I first ran for Mayor in 2008, I knew what the salary was, and I have been satisfied with what the people of Huntsville have paid me. I have never asked for a raise and have chosen to place my financial focus on my department heads and employees." Mayor Battle has to be reelected to get the increase from $132,000 all the way up to $175,000. The increase will go into effect in November 2020.
City Council President Devyn Keith proposed the pay raise.