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Manlius Village doles out bonus bucks

Court clerk Stanley was in line to receive a salary boost in addition to a $500 bonus, which the board previously approved. Serafin recommended increasing her hourly rate to be in line with the Fayetteville court clerk.

Trustee Scott McGrew said the board should not just automatically follow in someone else's footsteps.

"We need to keep things even keel. We shouldn't compare pay with other municipalities," McGrew said. "We are our own municipality."

Trustee Eric Krouse said the village already pays a fair wage.

"It is what it is," he said. "People are free to work somewhere else. No one is held hostage here."

Baum suggested a 4-percent raise was reasonable for Stanley and well deserved. Stanley, who attended the meeting, said she would waive the $500 bonus if the board approved the salary increase.

After Baum motioned, seconded by Trustee Harold Hopkinson, to give Stanley the pay raise, the other board members present (McGrew and Krouse) along with the mayor voted nay.

Trustees Janice Abdo-Rott and Natalie Miner were not present for the vote.

Serafin said village Judge Joe Greenman could still award Stanley the $500 board-approved merit bonus. He even made a motion to increase the bonus to $1,000. This, the mayor said, would still be in line with the amount the village approved for bonuses. No one seconded his motion.

Serafin said he favors a merit-based wage system because it keeps the budget in line. He is also aware of the importance of keeping village employee salaries competitive.

"As mayor, my bottom line is to control our spending in an economic climate that is still uncertain," Serafin said, noting the village is facing a budget cycle that must deal with a 50-percent decrease in county sales tax revenue. "This is not a reflection on the good work and service Jan provides. This is about being consistent."

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