Larry Mantle |

Perhaps part-time city councilmembers should make more than they do

I asked on Friday morning's "AirTalk" whether the less than $10,000 a year most part-time councilmembers make is sufficient.  The outrageous compensation most of Bell's council made has received tremendous attention.  However, that's way outside the norm.

The argument for low compensation is that it both puts less strain on city budgets and keeps the council from attracting candidates who are looking for ways to enrich themselves.  The citizen-politician is the ideal in this model.

However, the trade-off is that the pool of candidates available to work a half-time job or more for less than $10,000 a year is limited to the well-to-do, retirees, and the self-employed.  Is that a negative or positive?

What do you think is the fairest level of compensation for part-time councilmembers?  What are your criteria for that pay?  Should the size, or characteristics, of a city matter?