MACEDONIA — Following Mayor Nick Molnar’s election Nov. 5, he will receive a 38 percent raise, an adjustment to the mayor’s post compensation city council approved by a 4-1 vote in September.
Molnar, who is unopposed, was promoted to mayor from his post as president of city council after former mayor Joe Migliorini resigned in July 2018. Molnar had been serving in his third four-year term on council when Migliorini resigned after being charged with battery in a domestic incident in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
The mayoral pay increase, from $65,195 to $90,123, becomes effective Dec.1, after Molnar is sworn in to the new term. Under state ethics law, elected officials cannot act on legislation that would increase their compensation during a current term.
The increase will put the city mayor’s office salary in the range of other area mayors like Stow, Tallmadge and Twinsburg. Molnar did not return phone calls seeking comment.
The legislation to approve the raise was introduced by Councilman Vini Ventura, who said Council had been discussing the legislation since July.
"That has been talked about for years, the mayor’s salary, but it was never acted upon," Ventura told the News Leader. "We talked to other people, other communities and took an average mean. He didn’t make highest, but we put it in a reasonable place so whomever had that position would have a fair and living wage. It’s still not the highest paid position in the city, as in most cities where the mayor is full time. The base pay for police, fire chiefs more than the mayor, but the mayor is responsible for those positions. A lot of people we talked to were surprised by what the mayor made, they couldn’t believe it was so low."
The mayor also serves as the economic development director and the safety director for Macedonia, Ventura said.
Council President Jan Tulley cast the dissenting vote, citing several reasons, including the city’s recent passage of levies — one for the city’s annual road program, and one for the safety forces and service department.
"I do not believe that after increasing residents’ taxes, for much-needed money, that a mayoral raise was part of either issue," Tulley said. "And I also believe that more discussion was required regarding a raise."
She suggested "options such as possibly implementing as an incremental increase" should have been discussed.
"Bottom line, any mayoral raise needed more discussion time and public input," she said.
Other area mayoral salaries for full-time mayors nearby include Stow, which pays $81,193; Twinsburg, which pays $109,323;, and Tallmadge, which pays $91,639.
Reporter April Helms can be reached at 330-541-9423, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @AprilKHelms_RPC