Council poised to enact unpaid furlough for city workers
The D.C. Council is poised to approve a revised 2011 budget today that calls for all non-essential city employees to take four furlough days on holidays, meaning they will not get paid time off on those days.
The proposal, part of an effort to close a $188 million shortfall, means that all 13 council members and incoming Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) will also lose four days of pay.
But neither Gray nor council member Kwame Brown (D-At Large) appeared interested Tuesday in discussing the possibility of further pay cuts for council members or the mayor as they grapple with closing the shortfall.
Currently, council members earn $125,583 a year, up from $92,500 in 2006. Council members are also allowed to hold other jobs, meaning several take home hefty salaries due to positions in the private sector.
The mayor has a salary of $200,000 annually, while the council chairman makes $190,000. According to an analysis conducted last summer by the D.C. Republican Committee, the D.C. Council chairman's salary is more than what 49 states pay their governors.
Several recent studies also reveal that District officials are among the best-paid in the nation, although members often note that they act as both a state legislator and a local official.
Chiefs of staff to many council members also take home six-figure salaries.
On Tuesday, the Washington City Paper published a chart that showed that the chiefs of staff earn $85,277 to $132,00 annually.
When asked whether the council should consider cutting its pay in light of the budget shortfall, Brown noted that council members are taking a hit by being furloughed like other city employees. Gray also noted that council members last year decided to forfeit a 3 to 5 percent cost-of-living adjustment to help with budget savings.
"The pay will be cut, by the furloughs," Gray said.
| December 7, 2010; 1:59 PM ET
Categories: Budget, City Finances, D.C. Council, D.C. Employees, Kwame Brown, Tim Craig, Vincent C. Gray
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