City Comptroller John Liu will be handing out over $750,000 in raises to employees at the Comptroller’s office, according to an email sent out to office employees.
His office stressed that the salary bump-ups will go to staffers in the Comptroller’s office who predate Liu’s term, which began on January 1 of this year, and not some of the big-name deputy comptrollers that Liu brought on-board, including former city councilman Simcha Felder, former Empire State Pride executive director Alan Van Capelle, or former Clinton White House staffer Eric Eve. Nor will the raises apply to any of Liu’s campaign staffers who have joined his administration.
Sharon Lee, a spokesperson in Liu’s office, said that the raises were “in compliance with a larger mayoral order that was made in July 2009,” a directive which gave salary increases to non-unionized Bloomberg Administration officials as well as non-unionized employees in city agencies. She said that 81 employees in the office will receive the raise.
In the heat of the political campaign season, city Comptroller William Thompson, then running for mayor, turned down the raises in light of the economic downturn.
Lee noted that the money for the raises was included in both this and last year’s budget, even though this was the first year that they were granted. She said that the money was approved by the Office of the Management and Budget. However, Jason Post, a Bloomberg spokesman, rejected the notion the administration was responsible for the staff raises, and noted that as an elected offical, Liu can set salaries how he chooses.
The Comptroller himself, who was not an employee of his office before July 2009, will not get a raise, his office noted.