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Wednesday, June 19, 2019

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Pay raises coming for parish president, councilmen

Pay raises coming for parish president, councilmen

By Meredith Burns

Daily Comet staff writer

The Lafourche Parish president and Parish Council members will see a bump in pay starting Jan. 1 as two ordinances passed in 2014 go into effect.

The 2016 budget passed by default at Monday’s budget hearing has council members set to receive a roughly 23 percent increase in pay from the $13,837 they received in 2015.

Councilmen will receive $17,064 in 2016, and the council chairman will earn $19,200.

The numbers were specified in a 2014 ordinance that Councilmen Jerry Jones, Michael Delatte, John Arnold, Lindel Toups and Jerry Lafont voted to approve.

Council members’ pay could increase more after the beginning of the year.
Jones proposed a budget amendment Monday to add $3,114 to the 2016 salary fund and $254 to employee benefits.

He said the amendment is needed to comply with the Home Rule Charter, which says all council members should receive a 2 percent raise every January between 2009 and 2027.

Finance Director Renita Jackson said the amendment would change the salaries to $17,405 for council members and $19,584 for the council chairman.

Too few council members were present at Monday’s meeting to vote on the amendment, but Jones said he plans to revisit that and other amendments when the new council is in place.

The parish president will see a 63 percent increase in pay from $74,952 in 2015 to $122,341 in 2016.
Parish President-elect Jimmy Cantrelle said he plans to follow up on his campaign pledge to donate the pay increase to Lafourche charities.

"To that end, a three-member independent committee will be set up to determine how the funds will be allocated,” Cantrelle said in an email. "This process is still to be determined as I have not taken office yet. However, I will uphold my pledge to donate the raise to charities that do such good work to help the people of Lafourche."