After asking for a 280% pay raise in mid term, you can imagine what Mark Evers looked like after enduring an hour of spirited public comments. Evers wanted to triple his salary with a raise of more than $41,000 making him a $65,000 Supervisor.
Speaker after speaker called it dishonest and unacceptable in an economy where folks have lost a third of their 401k's, endured lay offs and find themselves anticipating a serious recession.
Not Mark Evers, his plan:
- Ride out the recession with a new full time job paying him $65,000.
- Give large raises to other officials hoping no one would complain.
- Spend more than last year.
- Increase the property tax levy another 3% and the highway levy another 3%.
- Pretend there is no economic crisis causing the State to plan 6 Billion in new cuts affecting all local governments.
To his credit, Councilman Lou Desso noted that the private sector is having none of these big raises. 2.5 to 3 percent is about it. Consequently, the Conservative coalition is split wide open as Mr. Desso affirms he will propose to amend the budget reducing all raises to 3%. Seems he figured out it could be tough running for county legislature next year while spending money like fellow Conservative Mark Evers. Incidentally, Councilman Michaels pledged to second that amendment when offered so it will be up to Councilman Spain whether these outrageous raises are approved. We say that because Councilman Kern shows no signs of being able to rid himself of his inability to say whatever Mark Evers tells him to. (Must be in the water?)
Channels 6 and 10 covered the meeting for their 11 o'clock news and the Record also sent a reporter. You can read her report here and see the CH 6 report here. Looks like Mark has managed to put North Greenbush and his actions back on the front page as he shops around for a political party to support him in these tough fiscal times.
On another note, it was a hell of a way to conduct a public hearing. Evers spent a half hour trying to spin his budget rather than simply allowing the public to speak. We hate to have to tell the Supervisor, but eating up the public's time with long explanations before they can speak is not how a public hearing is supposed to be run.