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City council in Mass. quietly hikes pay 44 percent

July 24, 2012
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NEW BEDFORD, Mass.—New Bedford city councilors have quietly voted themselves a pay raise, the first in 15 years.

The Standard Times reports (http://bit.ly/NSZoEj) that the nearly 44 percent salary hike approved last week was part of an amendment to the city code that never appeared on the council's public agenda or the minutes of its meetings.

The raise, the first since 1997, would hike the annual pay of councilors from $14,612 to $21,000.

Mayor Jon Mitchell says he'll review the measure before deciding whether to sign it.

Councilors defended the pay raise and the process by which it was approved. They said the proposed pay increases were first mentioned at a committee hearing in May as part of an overall discussion of salaries in the city budget.

Only one councilor, Joseph Lopes, opposed the change.

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Information from: The (New Bedford, Mass.) Standard-Times, http://www.southcoasttoday.com

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