Monday, December 8, 2008
A proposal by Pittsburgh city councilman Ricky Burgess to amend the 2009 budget to eliminate the cost of living pay increase the council members will get in January died during city council budget hearing Monday when no member would second his motion. Burgess says while some council members may think that the combined cost of $12,690 dollars for the 9 members may not seem like much in the larger budget, it is a lot of money for many who live in the city. He says that is nearly half of the median income in the city of Pittsburgh and more than many people in his district make all year. Burgess says as the nation faces tough times and budget cuts are being made at the state and federal level, the city must follow suit and tighten its belt where it can. Burgess says he will continue to work to have the budget changed but without so much as a second, it is unlikely that he will be able to make any changes before the preliminary vote is taken Wednesday. Burgess says he will also look into ways that he can return his cost of living increase.