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Parsing City Salaries

Editor,

At a dinner party over the weekend the topics of Laguna Beach salaries came up (“Top-Paying Jobs Under Scrutiny,” June 24 edition) and here is what the group agreed on.

(1) Despite many attempts, one of the guests could not find a list of all of the contractors and subcontractors the city uses or what they are paid. They said that they check the financial section as well.  So we don’t know how much the city does in-house as was claimed in a rebuttal to the article about city pay.

(2) Everyone wants to live in Laguna but the everyone wants to live in Beverly Hills, etc.  So is a city obligated to adjust salaries for that? Also, the city has in the past helped new employees buy homes in Laguna.  Supposedly if they leave the city will get reimbursed for that investment. How does that work?

(3) The city clerk’s position was the most discussed. That position is paid $120,000 plus mileage, etc., and has one assistant. The city clerk for Los Angeles is paid $150,000 plus some perks and has two assistants. We don’t understand how our city could generate so much business for the city clerk in Laguna versus the city clerk in Los Angeles. 

(4) Some people were upset about the city treasurer not being full time.  Certainly some of the city clerk salary should be lessened and distributed to people who also work very hard. We agreed that all of the revenues and expenditures this very “busy” city would also demand a full time treasurer. 

I write this on behalf of those attending the dinner party.

Ganka Brown, Laguna Beach

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