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Meeting Date: August 28, 2001

Subject/Title: Recommendation for Increase of City Council Compensation

Submitted by: Jon Elam, City Manager on behalf of City Council Member Wade Gomes

Approved by: Jon Elam, City Manager

Adopt the proposed Ordinance amending Chapter 2.08, Section 2.08.010 of the Municipal Code pertaining to the Monthly Compensation of members of the City Council. The recommendation is to increase the monthly compensation of the City Council to $569.25 per month as provided in Government Code §365169 (c].

Revisit Redevelopment Agency allowance in the future as activity increases. Recommend the City Council perform a bi-annual compensation review to increase compensation in line with cost of living adjustments up to maximum allowed by law.

September 12, 2000, the City Council voted not to increase the City Council monthly compensation. 

At the request of the City Council, a sub-committee of the Brentwood Advisory Neighborhood Committee met with staff on Thursday, August 17, 2000 at 6:30 p.m. to discuss compensation of the City Council and prepare a recommendation regarding an increase to City Council compensation. The sub-committee discussed, at length, the City Council’s current monthly compensation as compared to compensation received by City Councils at 50 other Cities. After consideration of this information and in line with in Government Code §365169 (c], the sub-committee made the above recommendation.

The sub-committee recommended an increase to City Council compensation at the September 12, 2000 City Council meeting. The sub-committee proposed $550 per month. At that time, the maximum monthly compensation allowed for the City Council was $552. Since another calendar year has passed, the new maximum amount payable to the City Council is $569.25 per month. The maximum amount is calculated by applying 5% for each year since 1988, which is the date of the last compensation increase to the current $345 monthly compensation. 

At the September 12, 2000 City Council meeting, the City Council voted not to increase monthly compensation. Subsequent to this action, a new Council member joined the City Council and Council Member Wade Gomes asked staff to return this item to the full City Council for consideration.

The following reference materials are attached: a memorandum prepared by the City Attorney regarding Council compensation, a copy of Brentwood Municipal Code Section 2.08.010 Monthly compensation designated, and a summary of statutory citations from the California Government Code. 

In addition to compensation, the City of Brentwood offers California Public Employees’ Retirement System benefits, which include retirement and health benefits. These are optional benefits for community service that are not available as cash compensation.



WHEREAS, Section 36516.6 of the Government Code of the State of California authorizes the City Council to increase their salaries by ordinance, and 

WHEREAS, Section 36516.5 prohibits a change in compensation during a Councilmember’s term of office but permits such adjustment of compensation of all members of a council serving staggered terms, whenever one or more members of such council becomes eligible for a salary increase by virtue of his beginning a new term of office, and

WHEREAS, a new term of office of certain members of the council will occur in November, 2002, and

WHEREAS, the last adjustment of salary occurred on January 26, 1988 to $345 per month, and

WHEREAS, Section 36516 permits an increase by Ordinance of an amount equal to 5 percent for each calendar year from the operative date of the last adjustment of salary, and 

WHEREAS, the period from January 1, 1989 to August 28, 2001 includes thirteen calendar years, and

WHEREAS, the twelve year period would allow a 65 percent increase over the $345 current monthly salary. 

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the City Council of the City of Brentwood hereby ordains:

Chapter 2.08, Section 2.08.010 of the Brentwood Municipal Code is hereby amended, effective October 1, 2001, to read:

Section 2.080.010 Monthly Compensation Designated

Each member of the City Council shall receive compensation of five hundred and sixty-nine dollars and twenty-five cents ($569.25) per month for services to the City.

PASSED, APPROVED AND ADOPTED by the City Council of the City of Brentwood at a regular meeting on the 11th day of September 2001 by the following vote:

AYES: Councilmembers

Michael A. McPoland, Sr.


Karen Diaz, CMC
City Clerk

State of California )
County of Contra Costa ) ss.
City of Brentwood )

I, Karen Diaz, City Clerk of the City of Brentwood, do hereby certify that the foregoing Ordinance had its first reading on August 28, 2001 and had its second reading on September 11, 2001, and was passed by the following vote:

AYES: Councilmembers 
NOES: None

Karen Diaz, CMC
City Clerk


TO: Mayor and City Councilmembers

From: Dennis Beougher, City Attorney

Re: Compensation

The salary of councilmembers of general law cities such as Brentwood is controlled by Government Code section 36516(a), which permits a city council to establish by ordinance a salary up to a ceiling determined by the city’s population. In a city up to and including 35,000 population, up to $300 per month may be paid to a city councilmember. 
In cities over 35,000 and up to 50,000 population, councilmembers may receive $400 per month. Larger cities have larger minimum compensation rates per month.

At any municipal election, the electorate may approve a higher salary. A directly elected mayor may receive additional compensation with the consent of the electorate or by ordinance of the city council. Gov. Code §36516.1. 

A salary established by city council action may be increased “but the amount of the increase may not exceed an amount equal to five percent for each year from the operative date of the last adjustment of salary.” Government Code §365169 (c]. Therefore, no compounding of the rate is permitted, only a simple 5% rate is allowed. Also, any salary increase may take effect only when at least one member of the council commences a new term. 

By Ordinance No. 415, adopted on January 26, 1988, effective the first meeting after November, 1988 election, the last city council compensation established the current compensation as $345 per month.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, whenever the legislative body of a city having a population less than 200,000 declares itself as the redevelopment agency, a city council member may receive compensation by up to $30 per meeting, up to four meetings per month. 

If the council would approve the maximum pay increase of no more than 5% per calendar year or 60% of the base rate of $345 plus the base rate, the new compensation would be $552 per month. Additionally, the Brentwood City Council could pass a resolution to establish a $30 per meeting rate, not to exceed four meetings per month. 

If it is specifically approved by the city council, redevelopment agency members are authorized to receive compensation for serving on the agency governing body. However, as a city less than 200,000 population, the compensation is limited to $30 per meeting, up to 4 meetings per month. 

Some city councils that serve as agency members have voted themselves the additional compensation authorized by the Health and Safety Code because of the increased amount of work and responsibility directly resulting from their redevelopment duties. Other Councilmembers, viewing these responsibilities as part of their council duties, have declined to approve additional compensation.

While the compensation for city council would only become effective after the November elections when a new term is started, the redevelopment agency legislation in the Health and Safety Code does not have that express limitation. However, a conservative approach and one that complies with the spirit and intent of the Government Code provisions concerning compensation would suggest that is appropriate to wait until after the November election, if a redevelopment agency compensation is approved. 



2.08.010 Monthly compensation designated.
Each member of the city council shall receive compensation of three hundred forty-five dollars per month for services to the city. (Ord. 415, 1988: Ord. 379, 1985: Ord. 327 § 1, 1982: Ord. 248 § 1, 1973)

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