Letters to the Editor

SLO manager, attorney are overcompensated for city’s size

City Manager Katie Lichtig, right, and City Attorney Christine Dietrick, left, at a San Luis Obispo City Council meeting in 2010.
City Manager Katie Lichtig, right, and City Attorney Christine Dietrick, left, at a San Luis Obispo City Council meeting in 2010.

The SLO City Council voted (4-1) on May 3 to award two $5,000 “retention incentives” to both City Manager Katie Lichtig and City Attorney Christine Dietrick. I am appalled by this and urge you to express your feelings to the City Council on this matter.

Both are already overcompensated for a city of our size; Ms. Lichtig receives $230,464 per year ($321,201 with benefits), and Ms. Dietrick receives $194,844 per year ($275,778 with benefits). By comparison, Gov. Jerry Brown earns $182,791; the mayor of Los Angeles (population 3.8 million) earns $239,993 — less than $10,000 more than Ms. Lichtig; and Kamala Harris, our state attorney general, earns $158,774.

The council resolution says their salaries are not being increased since they already fall within 5 percent of the market median. Yet isn’t this bonus in essence a backdoor salary increase?

While $10,000 is a pittance of our city’s tax dollars, it is a misuse of our money and further illustrates the disconnect between the actions of this City Council and the will of the people of San Luis Obispo who expect their council members to be better stewards of our hard-earned money.

John Grady, San Luis Obispo

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