When the BEA, made up of Mayor Kamal Johnson, Council president Tom DePietro, and city treasurer Heather Campbell, reviewed the budget presented by the treasurer's office on October 30, the first thing they honed in on, according to Gossips' notes from that meeting, was a $1,663.81 stipend paid to the assistant treasurer, Matthew Parker. Campbell warned that if they removed it, the assistant treasurer would grieve, because the stipend was established past practice. DePietro argued it could be removed because it was not contractual. And so the assistant treasurer's stipend, along the cost of two new computers (an expense significantly greater than the assistant treasurer's stipend), was cut from the 2021 budget.
The assistant treasurer did indeed protest the effort to balance the 2021 budget by depriving him of a stipend that had been paid to the assistant treasurer for more than twenty years and filed a notice of claim against the City. On Tuesday, the Council passed a budget amendment reinstating the stipend. The resolution explains the reasoning behind this action: "It is in the City's best interest to resolve this claim with minimum cost and disruption by authorizing the Mayor to entering [sic] a settlement agreement reinstating the stipend and settling all current and future claims by Mr. Parker related to this matter." The details of the story can be found in the Register-Star: "Council seeks settlement with assistant treasurer."
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