Debating Cincinnati Manager's Raise And Review

Mar 1, 2017

A Cincinnati Council Member said council should make a decision in two weeks on whether City Manager Harry Black gets a pay raise.  

Christopher Smitherman addressed the issue Wednesday during the regular weekly meeting.

"If members of council do not want to extend the raise, then we don't extend the raise," Smitherman said. "But I think that he's deserving of an up or down vote in two weeks on the matter, no matter what members of council need to do or want to do in that timeframe."

Mayor John Cranley first proposed a three percent raise for Black in December.  But there has been no vote on the measure.

There was a lengthy debate about some council members conducting a performance review of the city manager.

Cranley was surprised such a review was taking place, and questioned its openness.  

Here's an exchange between Cranley and Yvette Simpson, who is convening the sessions with council members Flynn, Murray and Seelbach.

  • Cranley: "I think the public has a right to know how the city manager is going to be reviewed."
  • Simpson: "And we will be happy to present all of that once we actually have a review to present."
  • Cranley: "I don't know why you are so defensive. I'm just asking how the decisions are being made to summarize eight peoples point of view into one document."
  • Simpson: "It's no different than what we do here every day."

Simpson said she was following what she thought was past practice for manager reviews.

"It was our understanding because this was something that was ordained by ordinance that we were conducting ourselves in the way that we should," Simpson said. "The reality is that if our next meeting needs to be publicly noticed, we will."

Eight council members submitted information for a review, and four members are working to compile the information to present to Black for his comments.