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Salary range, guidelines set for new city attorney, manager

The search for the next city manager and city attorney is a little more defined as City Council recently approved the salary range and compensation package for each position.

At its Tuesday, Jan. 12, meeting, council approved a salary range of $130,000 to $155,000 for the city manager and $120,000 to $145,000 for the city attorney.

The amounts will be given GovHR USA, the firm handling the recruitment, to use in its materials.

“For development of the brochure, they would like to have some initial numbers out there to be able to attract an applicant,” said Councilwoman Tracy Folda.

The agenda packet included the salaries of three past city managers and two past city attorneys. The city managers’ starting and ending salaries ranged from $129,000 to $183,000, and the city attorneys’ ranged from $90,000 to $184,000.

“What I recommend is removing the last city attorney, last city manager’s salary,” she said. “As you can see they were very much above and beyond what previously had been given to people with years of experience before them. It kind of throws off the numbers we are looking at.”

Former City Manager Al Noyola’s starting salary was $168,500 and his ending one was $183,007. Dave Fraser, the city manager before him, started with $138,200 in November 2012 and ended with $153,878 in June 2017.

Former City Attorney Steve Morris’ starting salary was $170,000 and his ending one was $184,636. The city attorney before him, Dave Olsen, earned $90,000 when he started working for the city in 1999. He made $140,626 when retired in 2017.

Folda said the proposed ranges were in line with cities such as Fernley, Mesquite and Yerington, which have a similar population.

Councilwoman Claudia Bridges said she agreed with those salary ranges even though some of the cities were more rural than Boulder City.

“I can agree with those salary numbers you came up with,” she said.

Councilman James Howard Adams also said he agreed with them.

Mayor Kiernan McManus said GovHR USA should look for candidates with department head level experience rather than just previous experience as a city manager.

“I think we need to have a recognition that we are a small town,” he said. “That this may be a starting point for a person rather than an ending point for a person as city manager.”

For the city attorney, the necessary experience is laid out in the city charter and requires a person to be “an attorney at law, admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the state of Nevada, who has been in actual practice of law in the state of Nevada for at least three years preceding his or her appointment. If practicable, the council shall appoint an attorney who has had special training or experience in municipal corporation law.”

In addition to the salaries, each position includes life insurance, paid leave, sick leave, relocation cost reimbursement, paid holidays and retirement benefits with the Nevada Public Employees’ Retirement System.

The city also provides health, dental and vision insurance and pays 100 percent of the premiums.

Noyola and Morris also received a monthly car allowance of $500 and monthly cellphone allowance of $150.

Folda said neither of those were included in the compensation because the city manager and city attorney would have access to city vehicles or could be reimbursed for mileage if using their own vehicle. They would also have use of a city cellphone.

“I don’t think at that pay a car allowance is necessary, but I think this is in line with what should be expected or what someone should expect if they’re looking to put themselves in this position,” Adams said.

The other members agreed and approved in a 4-0 vote to have Administrative Services Officer Bryce Boldt give this information to GovHR USA.

Councilwoman Judy Hoskins was absent from Tuesday’s meeting.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

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