• John McGary, Woodford Sun Staff

Here's Johnny - Give 'em a pay raise

I can think of at least eight people in Woodford County who are underpaid. I am, of course, one of them. However, I'm a journalist, and thus, according to President Trump, very dishonest and an enemy of America, so I suppose this Navy veteran should be happy to be employed at all. But I digress ... as enemies of America and very dishonest people often do. Whoops - did it again. But seriously, folks: The seven people who really deserve a big pay hike are the six Midway City Council members and the mayor. It's been at least two decades since pay for the council has been raised, and a decade for the mayor. Though the size of the pay raise - or pay rise, as Brits call it - is debatable, the fact that they are owed one is, in my view, indisputable. Council members are paid $25 per meeting, which amounts to $50 per month, and though they attend committee and other meetings from time to time, they aren't paid for them. The mayor is paid $50 per meeting, or $100 per month, and he, too, doesn't get extra bucks for extra meetings. Thing is, the vast majority of time and effort put in by council members and the mayor happens before, after and between official council meetings. They answer calls and emails from constituents, do their own research, report potholes, and attend continuing education classes sponsored by the Kentucky League of Cities. Etc., etc. If I were a betting man, I'd bet only 10 percent of the time they put in for their part-time political jobs occurs in their council meetings, which occur the first and third Mondays of each month. So let's do the math here: If the average Midway City Council meeting is 45 minutes, that's 90 minutes a month. Ninety multiplied by ten is 900, or 15 hours. If my ciphering is correct, that amounts to $3.33 per hour for council members and $6.67 for the mayor - with no benefits. (One could argue that the mayor, especially with the increased demands stemming from the increased activity at Midway Station, puts in far more than 15 hours a month.) Last month, an ordinance that would have raised the pay of council members to $400 per month and the mayor to $1,000 per month failed by a four to two vote. One of the "yes" votes was supplied by Council Member Steve Simoff, who said afterwards that he'd have tried to amend the ordinance to limit the raise for council members to $200, but didn't know if it would have been in order. It would have been, but that's sort of beside the point. On Thursday, Aug. 24, the council held a work session to discuss the matter. A new, revised proposal to raise council members' pay to $200 per month and the mayor's to $1,400 may follow as soon as the next council meeting, which will be Tuesday, the day after Labor Day. As was the case with the first proposal, the raises won't take effect until Jan. 1, 2019 - after the next election. It's likely that raising wages above the slave level will attract better candidates, though no one's going to get rich on the jobs. The Sun doesn't endorse candidates, but I can endorse ideas in this column, and this feller thinks the council and mayor of the wonderful town of Midway deserve a raise. Now, as for that pay hike for a certain dishonest enemy of America who served in the U.S. Navy ... And now for something completely different: My birthday is a national holiday this year. Just sayin'. P.C.S. left a message asking whether I want my birthday brownies before or after said national holiday, and I suppose I could call her back to put in my order. However, our new phone system is giving me fits, so I'll just use this space to let one of my Dearest Readers know that I'll happily accept her baked goods this Friday. I will share them with fellow employees and anyone else who submits a written request and $25 check to john@woodfordsun.com. Or: Me; 184 South Main Street; Versailles, KY 40383.

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