Monday, November 2, 2009

Reelect Ed Pawlowski and Give Him a Big Raise

UpDate: Mayor Pawlowski cruised to reelection w/ a whopping 74% popular vote mandate. Congrats, Mr. Mayor! 

The Mayor of Allentown's salary has not been increased since 1996. It's hard to believe that the mayor of the third largest city in Pennsylvania is paid only $61,493.00. Several years ago, there was concern that the salary was too low compared to the salaries of other PA Mayors, so a group was formed to study the issue. The group determined that in 2010 the Mayor of Allentown's salary should increase to $95,000.00 and City Council approved this increase.

Currently, because of economic hard times the Obama Administration is well on its way to reversing (and making it look easy), there are some people who think Mayor Pawlowski should not take his approved salary increase. That's dumb. But consider the source(s). 

Ray O'Connell (D), a former ASD middle school principal who is running for City Council supports a pay increase for Mayor Pawlowski so Ray's got our vote. O'Connell understands that in order to attract highly qualified mayoral candidates to Allentown, the mayor's salary should reflect the importance of the position. Educators like O'Connell understand this concept, likely because they have first-hand experience with being undervalued, see: the unfairly low salary most teacher's make compared to the very valuable job they do. Ditto Ed Pawlowski. 

Here at Lehigh Valley Somebody, the #1 Most Influential Political Blog in Pennsylvania most weeks in Liberal Influence, we believe that Mayor Pawlowski has accomplished a lot for Allentown. No real estate tax increase in 5 yrs, crime is down 12% overall, surveillance cameras have been installed, new businesses are sprouting up like flowers downtown, our parks are being improved despite rabidly racist opposition from a lunatic fringe "3%,", and slumlords are being held accountable. Sure, we have a long way to go, but we think Ed Pawlowski is making a hugely positive difference. Plus, anyone who works so hard for Allentown as Ed Pawlowski does, and for so little pay, has gotta have his heart and soul into it and care very deeply about our, and his, city.


And then let's start paying Ed $95K annually ASAP so he keeps running Allentown and keeps running for reelection and winning.