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City Impoverished But Proposed Budget Would Double Mayor’s Salary

October 18, 1990

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) _ The mayor of this impoverished city has proposed 1991 and 1992 budgets that would more than double his salary and those of other elected municipal officials.

But Mayor Carl E. Officer said the proposals shouldn’t be taken too seriously because they will be revised extensively.

″I don’t want anyone to take the figures we submitted overly serious. It needs a lot of work,″ he said.

Alderman Percy McKinney was one of those who didn’t take it very seriously.

″Sometimes you have to take a reality break,″ he said. ″This is totally outlandish. We simply cannot afford that.″

East St. Louis faces a debt estimated at $47 million. The city has had trouble meeting its employee payroll and maintaining municipal services.

A judge recently gave away City Hall to pay a court award to a man who sued the city. The man sold the property, and the city has appealed the judge’s original ruling.

A $34 million bailout bill passed this summer by the Illinois General Assembly created a state panel to oversee the city’s finances.

Under the Distressed Cities Act, municipal officials had to submit the budgets to the East St. Louis Financial Advisory Authority by Monday. Officer met the deadline when he submitted the two plans.

″The plans were not detailed. All I was simply trying to do was comply with the statute,″ Officer said. Officer’s salary under the 1991 budget would increase 107 percent, increasing from $30,000 to $62,366. It would go up to $65,484 the following year.

Treasurer Charlotte Moore’s salary would jump from $25,000 to $51,900 in 1991. The salary for that office would then increase to $54,500 in 1992. City Clerk Alzada Carr would get a $24,200 raise in 1991; her salary would increase from $22,500 to $46,700.

A public hearing on the proposals is scheduled for Oct. 30.

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