According the Times Union:
The city's new commissioner of planning and economic development will get a $15,000 boost in his salary under a unanimous vote by the Troy Local Development Corp. at its May meeting.
Steve Strichman will receive the additional compensation as the TLDC's CEO in addition to his budgeted city commissioner's salary of $76,485, bringing his total income to $91,485.
"The administration asked us to do it," TLDC Chairman Kevin O'Bryan said Monday.
City Council President Carmella Mantello was displeased:
City Council President Carmella Mantello said she did not know about the TLDC payment to Strichman.
"As a matter of public policy, it was an end run around the budget process," Mantello said.
"It lacks transparency," said Mantello, observing that the mayor should have come to the council to ask for a higher salary for the job. "Just wait for my press conference!"
TLDC operates independently from the city government.
Of course, it is not an end-run around the budget process as the TLDC, like the Industrial Development Authority, are independent entities, distinct from the City. Yes, there mission is inextricably linked to the City, but they are different entities. District 2 Councilman Mark McGrath has struggled with this concept for years, requesting IDA records from the city numerous times, only to be told that he must request the records from the IDA.
In fact, both the IDA and the TLDC have the authority to give salaries to city officials that sit on their respective boards. It just has not occurred in the past. Neither Deputy Mayor Crawley or former Commissioner Dunne took salaries from these entities.
As for transparency, this is it. The vote is the transparency. The City Council does not oversee the IDA or TLDC. The vote is public and Strichman will need to be confirmed by the Council.
Why the extra $15,000 was needed is unknown.
O'Bryan said the $15,000 payment reflects the work that has to be done by Strichman that is independent of his role as planning commissioner.
Except that the former Commissioner, as well as former Deputy Mayor Crawley, did the same work without the salary bump. In fact, according to the Charter, the Commissioner of Planning and Economic Development is automatically on the TLDC board so...isn't it part of their duties?