A question on the Nov. 8 general election ballot asks Temple Terrace voters whether to remove a ban on raising the mayor’s salary during a current term in office. This is a sensible change voters should support.
As it stands, the Temple Terrace city charter prohibits a salary increase for the mayor during the term of office for which the mayor was elected. While the intentions seem pure, the provision is overly restrictive and ignores the role the mayor plays in Temple Terrace and across Tampa Bay.
The power of the purse in Temple Terrace rests with city council, and there’s no reason the charter should narrow council’s authority over when to use it. As a practical matter, the current salary, $2,870 annually, is ridiculously low, and hardly attractive to candidates with full-time jobs. It also overlooks reality; the mayor has obligations outside Temple Terrace, representing the city’s interests on various regional boards. This change would give council its rightful authority. It could also lead to bringing the mayor’s compensation closer in line with the job responsibilities while attracting a broader field of capable candidates.
The Times recommends a Yes vote in the city of Temple Terrace referendum.
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