Mayor James J. Fiorentini > Press Release
For Immediate Release, February 10, 2009
Mayor, Staff Take Voluntary Pay Cuts
Mayor James J. Fiorentini and his staff today agreed to take voluntary pay cuts in light of Haverhill’s budget crisis.
The Mayor agreed to take a 3% pay cut from now until the end of the year. A 3% cut amounts to $2,700 on the Mayor’s salary. The Mayor has a staff of two, Mayoral Assistant Linda Koutoulas and Chief of Staff Andrew Herlihy. They each staff member agreed to forego a $1,000 pay raise that had been promised to them earlier in the year. Mayor Fiorentini praised his staff for the voluntary cut and called them “the best and most dedicated staff in the world.”
In his State of the city speech last week, the Mayor asked for unions to voluntarily accept higher co-pays and deductibles on their health insurance plans in order to avoid layoffs and cuts in services. The Mayor said that increasing health care co-pays to match the co-pays of the State Group Insurance Commission would save the city $2 million and would prevent cuts in services.
Today, the Mayor said his hope was to lead by example in the hopes that unions would agree to the higher co-pays and deductibles. “I am asking each union member to pay more on their insurance, something my family and I are willing to do. I know that this amounts to a pay cut and a sacrifice for many of them. Since I am asking them to sacrifice, I believe in leading by example. It is my hope that this cut will set the stage for unions joining with us to save our vital services, keep fire stations open, keep teachers teaching and keep police on the streets.”
This is the second time the Mayor has taken a voluntary cut in pay. On assuming office in 2004, the Mayor took a voluntary $5,000 pay cut. Last month, the Mayor also cut his travel allowance and paid for a trip to Washington out of his own pocket.
The city of Haverhill is facing a deficit of $2.5 million in this budget with the probability of more cutbacks in June.
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