A proposal to increase the annual salary of Pensacola’s mayor from $100,000 to $125,000 did not advance at Thursday’s meeting of the Pensacola City Council.
Council members voted 3-3 on the motion to pass the proposal, falling short of the 4 votes needed to approve the raise. Supporting the increase were Council President Gerald Wingate and council members Larry B. Johnson and Brian Spencer. Council members Sherri Myers, Andy Terhaar, and P.C. Wu voted against the proposal, and council member Jewel Cannada-Wynn was absent from the meeting.
The salary of Pensacola’s mayor is set by city ordinance. By charter, any change to the salary can’t take effect until after the next general election, to be held in November.
The salary for other top government officials in the area is much higher than that of Pensacola’s mayor. Escambia County’s county administrator is paid an annual salary of $170,000, while Escambia County’s sheriff makes $145,000 a year. Most of the county’s other constitutional officers — the clerk of the circuit court, tax appraiser, tax collector, and supervisor of elections — are paid about $135,000 a year, as is the county’s superintendent of schools.
Current mayor Ashton Hayward hasn’t yet said whether or not he will seek a third and final term this fall, while Escambia county commissioner Grover Robinson — who spoke out against the proposed salary increase — announced his campaign for mayor last October. The mayoral election is scheduled to be held on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Should more than two candidates qualify to run, the election would be instead held on Tuesday, August 28; if no candidate wins more than 50% of the vote, the top two vote-getters would then proceed to a November 6 runoff.