10:00 PM PDT on Monday, July 26, 2010

Cassie MacDuff

With the scandal over exorbitant pay for Bell officials, Inland residents may wonder if their city governments, too, have approved extravagant salaries unbeknownst to them.

A 2007 Press-Enterprise survey showed Inland city manager salaries doubled between 1996 and 2006. Some now top $200,000.

But they’re nowhere near the $787,637 a year Bell’s city manager was making.

On Monday, a spot check of cities in Riverside and San Bernardino counties showed some managers have taken pay cuts along with rank-and-file employees.

Grand Terrace City Manager Betsy M. Adams, for example, took a 10 percent salary cut, reducing her base pay from $175,000 a year to $166,500. Grand Terrace has no assistant city manager position or police chief (a sheriff’s lieutenant supervises a few deputies).

Dave Mora, West Coast director of the International City/County Management Association, said most city managers are forgoing salary increases or reducing their salaries as employees’ pay is being reduced.

Redlands’ city manager, Enrique Martinez, on the other hand, got a health stipend for himself and the city attorney this spring, while laying off workers and cutting others’ pay.

Redlands couldn’t provide figures but Councilman Mick Gallagher said Martinez’s pay tops $240,000.

Corona Deputy City Clerk Toni Taber said her city had been expecting questions about pay in the wake of the Bell scandal. It readily provided the information:

City Manager Brad Robbins makes $230,256 a year; Assistant City Manager Greg Ervine makes $208,392 a year and the police chief makes $181,236 a year.

I never heard back from San Bernardino. But its manager, Charles McNeely, was making $275,000 a year when he was hired in March 2009. A year ago he recommended raising the assistant city manager salary to $197,000.

Riverside City Manager Brad Hudson’s salary is $294,525 plus benefits; Assistant City Manager Tom DeSantis makes $220,031 plus benefits and Police Chief Sergio Diaz makes $229,999 plus benefits. (Spokesman Austin Carter said Bell figures excluded benefits.)

Loma Linda City Manager Jarb Thaipejr is paid $175,000 a year. But he also serves as public works director, city engineer and human resources director, doing four jobs for the price of one.

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