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EDITORIAL: City council's pay increase makes sense

Public officials typically face criticism for giving themselves a raise, as Superior City Councilors did Tuesday. In this case, however, it was long overdue.

Public officials typically face criticism for giving themselves a raise, as Superior City Councilors did Tuesday. In this case, however, it was long overdue.

The stipend was increased from $300 to $400 a month which, by percentage, is a significant hike. But it's the first increase in 14 years. Had the inflation rate been applied, councilors would be earning $483 a month.

But no matter how you calculate it, the sum does little more than offset councilors' expenses. Four hundred dollars certainly doesn't come close to reimbursing them for the time they've invested at meetings or talking about city affairs on the phone or in person with constituents and others. Nobody's getting rich off the payment.

Some may feel they shouldn't be paid at all. In fact, councilor Dennis Dalbec has declined to accept his pay. That's an honorable gesture. But it still should be available to others who might otherwise lack the financial wherewithal to serve.

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