Friday, February 15, 2008
Ricketts Turns Down Raise He Couldn't Accept
When I read this headline, "Mayor Declines $15,000 Raise This Year", I had to laugh. First, Lawrence Mayor Paul Ricketts sought a $15,000 a year pay raise during his first month in office because he was going to have so much more work to do now that the city was getting back the water utility former Mayor Tom Schneider illegally turned over to some of his cronies at a cost of millions to Lawrence taxpayers. The city's Utility Service Board quickly approved his raise, but the attorneys said not so fast. It turns out the raise is illegal. That led Ricketts to issue this statement: “I must respectfully decline this offer. Rest assured that this in no way (will) diminish my resolve and dedication to achieving the maximum reduction possible in our water rates.” According to the Star's Cathy Kightlinger, Ricketts will be back next year to pick up his pay raise. "Ricketts said the council could build a raise into his salary this year for next year," Kightlinger writes. “We’ll have to talk about that when the budget comes,” said Ricketts.