Lynn Haven city commissioners plan to double their own earnings in the 2017-2018 budget.
A raise for city employees is also included in the budget.
Officials said the raises are needed to provide workers in the city of Lynn Haven with a livable wage.
“It sounds horrendous when you say you’re raising something by 100 percent,” Mayor Margo Anderson said.
But when you note they only made between $8-9,000 a year, a 100 percent raise would pay Lynn Haven commissioners and Mayor Margo Anderson between $7 and $8 an hour.
“The stipend received by the Lynn Haven Commission has not been raised for many years,” she said.
Anderson says the previous city manager recommended the raise. She says the increase is necessary to compensate the time and money that the commissioners spend while on the job.
“It’s not about looking at it as an income for me, it’s just looking at being able to cover the expenses that I incur as I work for the city of Lynn Haven,” Anderson said.
Even after this raise, Anderson and the commission will still make less than mayors and commissioners of some close surrounding cities like Panama City. However, earnings often fall in line with a city’s population. Fort Walton Beach has a similar population as Lynn Haven and it’s mayor and commissioners make less then $6,000 a year. On the other hand, Springfield has half the population of Lynn Haven, and it’s mayor makes almost $15,000 a year.
The proposed budget also grants raises to city employees like mowers, construction workers, and fire fighters.
“We have hourly employees in the city of Lynn haven that make $12 an hour. That’s not a livable wage,” Anderson said.
She said she hopes to give most city employees a six percent raise.
“I will work very hard to make sure that those salaries come up, and that we do have the money in the budget to do it. It’s going to happen.”
Not all city employees will be subject to the increase.
“We’re looking are those hourly people who have not had those raises in so long,” Anderson said.
She said she looks forward to giving workers the pay they deserve.
“They’ve been paid too little too long.”
The commission will vote on the salary increases at their budget meeting tomorrow at 6 p.m.
Mayor Anderson says if approved, they will be put into effect next month.