City manager gets pay raise
SNOHOMISH — City Manager Larry Bauman picked up a 3 percent performance pay raise that becomes effective next week.
The City Council voted unanimously to give Bauman a raise.
The increase sets Bauman’s salary to $140,051.
Mayor Karen Guzak proposed the increase and praised Bauman last week.
“I’ve worked very closely with our city manager for seven years and council and I both have great confidence for the work he’s done and our evaluation of him has been superior,” Guzak said.
During the Great Recession, Bauman did not receive any pay increase, Guzak said.
Bauman joined the city in 2002.
A city manager is the effective CEO of a “weak mayor”-type of city such as Snohomish.
Monroe and Everett have the “strong mayor” form of government that positions their mayor as CEO.
The city manager is responsible for the oversight of all city functions and handles intergovernmental issues.
Many can agree Bauman has had a colorful stack of years featuring highlights and lowlights with Snohomish.
He helped lead the city through the Great Recession without making any major cuts to city staff or city programs.
He also was key in navigating through the issue of the city’s noncompliant sewage plant, an issue that crossed the tipping point to a lawsuit just before he entered the city. Bauman was instrumental in negotiating with the state Department of Ecology for new agreements to make the sewage plant compliant in staggered steps, and extending compliance deadlines to halt an yearly series of exponentially higher sewage tax rates.
Bauman was also part of the 6-year legal saga surrounding a Snohomish Police tasing incident that occurred in 2008 that the city won the favorable verdict in April.
Last year, Bauman and the city came under scrutiny from the public blow up of errors regarding the Denny and Kendall plats, where a city employee gave permits without collecting developer fees that years later the city tried making homeowners pay for.
Homeowners stuck in the mess commented that Bauman should have been fired over the issue.
After public outcry, the City Council did not make homeowners pay the cumulative $112,239 in unpaid developer fees on their homes.
“The success of the city is visible,” Guzak said. “Businesses are doing well, the Centennial Trail is doing well, we are doing very well considering the hard times, and much of that is due to the city manager and our staff.”