As city struggles, Trenton, NJ, Council members want to double their pay
Amidst an ongoing feud with Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora that has essentially stalled city government, the City Council is preparing to approve a measure that would double their salaries.
The ordinance states Trenton "has many ills," and as a result, council members are forced to "work longer hours, spend more time away from home and defer some career goals."
A position on the council is considered part-time, and council members are paid $20,000 per year.
Under the proposal, that salary would increase to $40,000 per year, with the council president getting an additional $5,000.
Political squabbles have stalled virtually all meaningful legislation in city government, including funding for breathing apparatus for Trenton fire fighters.
A delay in approving a city budget left Trenton on the edge of default until the state stepped in last month.
Guscioria issued a statement condemning the pay raises.
"With council pay raises on the docket," Gusciora said, "Let's hope they have enough time to fit in the business of the city."
The mayor has asked state officials to take over the city's budget, but so far the state has refused.
However, with the Murphy administration clearly monitoring the situation in Trenton, it's unclear if the pay raises would be allowed.
In 2019, the council tried to increase their pay by 50%, but the NJ Department of Community affairs stepped in to clock them. City Council members have not had a pay increase since 2003.