Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to reflect the city manager’s salary last year was $372,700.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Sacramento City Manager Howard Chan is asking the city council for a pay bump, and as a top earner within the city of Sacramento, many people are questioning if it’s a good use of money.
If the city council approves the request for a raise, it would put him at $400,652 a year. That’s a jump from the $372,700 he was making last year. On top of that, he’s asking for an additional 30 days of leave.
“It’s just not the time for it,” Dave Kempa, editor of Voices: River City, said. “Currently, he is not entitled to a raise of this magnitude.”
Chan has spent the last five years overseeing Sacramento, and now he’s asking for a 7.5% pay raise. Kempa, editor of a progressive political podcast, says it would be a waste of money. On top of that, he says this money could be spent on ongoing issues within the city surrounding homelessness.
“That can be the difference between staying sheltered and ending up on the streets, couch surfing, in a very vulnerable position where you are open to the elements,” Kempa told FOX40.
While it is up to the city council to deny or approve chan’s raise, Jon Coupal says it’s important to remember where the money comes from.
“Taxpayers of the city of Sacramento pay for all salaries,” Coupal, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association president, said.
The association is a nonprofit aimed at advocating against raising taxes in California. Coupal also wants to remind residents that the base salary isn’t the only thing that Chan is getting.
“You also have to consider medical benefits and for public employees in California, which includes the city of Sacramento, the benefits are very generous,” Coupal said.
If approved, Chan will also get about 96 days of leave a year. All of this will be retroactive pay dating back to Feb. 12 of this year. And with the cost of living continuing to get more expensive, Coupal says, whether or not this is fair, this is a very generous ask.
“People in the private sector struggling to get any increases and struggling to hold onto their jobs,” Coupal said.
FOX40 reached out to the city manager for comment on this story, but he did not agree to an interview.