WeHo City Council approves +$1.5 million in raises for city staff

While slashing funds for the L.A. Sheriff’s Department this week, West Hollywood City Council simultaneously approved more than $1.5 million in salary increases and other benefits for staff at City Hall.

City Council signed a memorandum of understanding with the West Hollywood Municipal Employees, AFSCME Local 3339, that provides city staff with a 5.5 percent base pay rate increase, based on rises in the cost of living, amounting to $1,550,505.

The package also a technology stipend of $75 per month, tuition reimbursement, bilingual pay, bereavement leave and up to 140 hours of paid vacation.

Council also voted to increase funding from $14,000 to $50,000 for the Russian Arts Festival.

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West
4 months ago

Im glad to see an investment in one of our founding communities. The Russian cultural arts festival is a gem.

:dpb
:dpb
4 months ago

The children were at it again. No understanding of impact, economics nor priorities.
And based on the feed back for the Russian Arts festival funding increase, I’m sure we’ll hear from Sepi Shyne. She’ll be teary eyed and indignant and most probably Russian-American in descent now.

alex
alex
4 months ago

Setting WeHo Priorities: We never see the focus on the Top Priorities. According to the citizens … it’s Public Safety and being able to walk in WeHo day & night without fear. WeHo City Council when will WeHo be safe again … should we keep funding beautification projects, art installations or employee raises or should we fund the Sheriff’s Department. Not just locally, but globally … news of WeHo has reached the world and everyone is questioning the decision making of WeHo City Council.

Ham Shipey
Ham Shipey
4 months ago
Reply to  alex

yep

Jimmy palmieri
Jimmy palmieri
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

Good grief

Ham Shipey
Ham Shipey
4 months ago
Reply to  Jimmy palmieri

thanks for the support

The Other
The Other
4 months ago
Reply to  alex

Physically most of the new development, condition of the city streetscapes and parks tell a sad and crude picture. The aesthetics of life have been overrun by poor decisions of city council members focus singularly on their individual goals and exploits which actually highlight their multiple deficiencies. Plummer Park, a revered gathering place and a historic setting has been severely diminished and neglecting crying for reasonable attention at no great expense yet the city throws at least $50 million at a grand staircase, bare unattractive park space and a facility fraught with problems. At the most elementary level it makes… Read more »

Joe Kibbie
Joe Kibbie
4 months ago
Reply to  The Other

And the new overhead street lighting – mega bright, harsh, creepy, uninviting – like tentaments and alleyways.

voter
voter
4 months ago

West Hollywood city managers are paid TWICE the pay rate of equivalent managers in other California cities.

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
4 months ago

I recall many years ago there was some weho cable t.v. host who actually went over the city’s bills and expenses and he uncovered that all weho city hall employees who appeared in the gay pride parade were actually getting paid I think $50 of taxpayer money to “appear” in the parade. It was shocking. And it forced them to change the policy and they stopped getting paid to appear. Where are the good citizens like that who made the city better? Instead, we are stuck with nitwits like money grabbers and media fame w****s like Lindsey, Sepi and all… Read more »

Randy
Randy
4 months ago
Reply to  WehoQueen

I watched it, all the time. It was called the “Complainer’s Variety Hour,” hosted by James Fuhrman. He used to bomb Heilman with his camera, when Heilman was walking from his car to Council meetings. He was quite a bit crazy, but it was entertaining as hell.

He ran on a platform in 2001, which included getting rid of rent control, and demolishing old buildings for “beautiful new ones.” He retired from his watchdog position in 2004.

http://www.smartvoter.org/2001/03/06/ca/la/vote/fuhrman_j/

https://laist.com/news/weho-city-hall-left-to-its-own-devices

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2004-sep-21-me-ethics21-story.html

WehoQueen
WehoQueen
4 months ago

Their salaries should be tied to the crime rate. These people are universally sickeningly overpaid. I get the feeling if there were no City Hall, and everything was just a free for all, it would be better than it is right now. Every single bad thing in the city is seemingly directly tied to that toxic poison Lindsey Horvath.

Randy
Randy
4 months ago
Reply to  WehoQueen

Horvath is not singularly tied to this wage increase. Many, many other Councilmembers have went along with this wage increase. And other wage increases.

I don’t remember them ever denying one. 5.5% is ridiculously absurd. Even if they were on a wage freeze during COVID (I’m guessing they weren’t).

WeHo Mary!
WeHo Mary!
4 months ago

Dealing with certain departments at the City is incredibly frustrating, I hope a few employees in particular only get a cost of living increase. Sometimes I feel like channeling Joan Collins via Bette Midler in Big Business and firing them all on the spot!

Last edited 4 months ago by WeHo Mary!
Michael on Havenhurst Drive
Michael on Havenhurst Drive
4 months ago

Most of these people couldn’t last five minutes in a profit making company. Many were hired bowing to “equity” nonsense, sex preference or Woke pronoun choice over talent. Talk about corruption.

Ian
Ian
4 months ago

Stealing from the police to give to Russian Arts festivals and raises for themselves….this is insanity!!!

Russian Culture Hear, Hear!
Russian Culture Hear, Hear!
4 months ago
Reply to  Ian

Unfortunately I disagree. The Russian Festival is the most authentic cultural and arts event around. Completely holistic and gives focus to those beyond the Russian Community which I believe we are blessed to have in Weho. Happy it received some additional funding and I understand it will likely move some activities next year into the Council Chamber for possible viewing of a film festival.

Tom
Tom
4 months ago

If you defund the police wtf rationale Is there to give 50,000 to arts period
50K is close to a year salary for 1 police officer

Russian Culture Hear,Heart
Russian Culture Hear,Heart
4 months ago
Reply to  Tom

Their original funding was $14,000 increased to $50,000. There is great value in that more so IMHO than Block By Block ride alongs that do-nothing fruitful other tan act as an impotent conduit to the sheriff. At least the Russian Festival is attended by families and children who are in the character building land. City Manager Wilson saw it differently and the CC agreed on that one.

Randy
Randy
4 months ago
Reply to  Tom

$50K is not even close to what it costs for a deputy, and they make well above that for their base salary. The proposal for cutting $3.2 million from the Sheriff contract would have reduced 10 deputies, or $320,000 per deputy. Although I think some of that would have went towards some administrative costs, so probably a little less. But well into the six figures. They are paying much more than an officer’s base salary. Benefits, insurance, etc..

Ham Shipey
Ham Shipey
4 months ago

Having a “Russian Festival” while Russians are slaughtering Ukrainians.

Russian Culture Hear, Hear
Russian Culture Hear, Hear
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

Ham I get your point however these folks in the Russian Community came from Russia and Ukraine and were accepted here years ago. They do not factor into the current conflict as many country folk do not as well. This is Putin’s War with himself targeting Ukraine conveniently. He is like a man that kicks a dog for no reason other than he can.🙄

Ham Shipey
Ham Shipey
4 months ago

But you’re not calling it the “Ukrainian Festival”. People would support that. To celebrate Russia right now….and receive our tax dollars???

So many conflicting names
So many conflicting names
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

We still call Monday Independence Day when woman, who make up 1/2 the population in the US, aren’t able to make independent decisions. So the world seems full of juxtapositions.

Russian Culture Hear, Hear
Russian Culture Hear, Hear
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

I understand the Russian Community which it has been known as for years has been in complete support of the Ukrainians. They share somewhat of a heritage before Putin’s War. Supporting the Russian Festival and thus the residents here would be the benevolent thing to do. Who wouldn’t welcome harmony and support?

Jimmy palmieri
Jimmy palmieri
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

Good grief

Concerned WeHonian
Concerned WeHonian
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

What does celebrating Russian cultural heritage as it relates to immigrants who have been here for 40+ years have anything to do with what the government of Russia is currently doing?

Do you propose canceling the Yom Hashoa day of remembrance event at WeHo because the government of Israel is killing Palestinians?

People are not their governments.

Jimmy palmieri
Jimmy palmieri
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

Good grief

Randy
Randy
4 months ago
Reply to  Ham Shipey

You are ridiculous. Even the citizens of Russia are good people, for the most part. They are led by an oppressive dictator, and are only allowed to see media that the government allows them to see. When they try an uprising, they fail, every time. Because their evil government arrests people for protesting, poisons people, etc..

And what a thing to say about our local Russian citizens, some of whom have lived here since the late 80’s. What an insult. You almost always say nasty things, but this might be a new low for you. Congratulations.

voter
voter
4 months ago

I’m not against cost-of-living increases for the remaining city workers, but the staff could easily be reduced by 20% or so to reduce waste and redundancy in the system.

Asking small (and large) business owners to pay for the extreme salaries of city workers is pitting private citizens against government employees, who are hogging all of the medical and retirement benefits at the expense of hard-working taxpayers who don’t have the benefit of feeding off the government gravy train.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
4 months ago
Reply to  voter

Obviously I think people should be paid fairly but I lobbied the City Council, unsuccessfully, that we should have done a national search to hire a new City Manager when Paul Arevelo retired. I don’t have an issue with our current City Manager but I believe that the organization would have benefited from having fresh eyes look at City Hall. We just seem top heavy on management and I don’t know if this is viable, particularly given the pension obligations that are accruing.

JF1
JF1
4 months ago

What an outrage. Vote to defund the sheriff’s department during a surge in violent crime…all the while vote to give city staff a raise. OUTRAGEOUS. SICKENING. VOTE. THEM. OUT.

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