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City manager gets pay hike

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The Evanston City Council voted Monday night to give City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz a two percent pay hike and forgive $10,000 of the principal of a no-interest city loan on his condo.

The vote followed a review of the manager's performance in a City Council executive session last month. Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl, in recommending the pay hike, said she and the aldermen gave the city manager "an outstanding performance review."

She said he received special praise for "his communication skills, creativity, transparency and ability to build partnerships in the community."

The pay hike, retroactive to Jan. 1, brings his annual salary to $210,206.20. City payroll records indicate he also receives an additional $52,739 in pension and other benefits.

Two aldermen, Peter Braithwaite, 2nd Ward, and Brian Miller, 9th Ward, voted against the new contract. Miller said he supported the salary hike but not the reduction of the loan balance.

During public comment, two residents, Junad Rizki and Betty Sue Ester, also said they were opposed the new contract.

The reduction in the loan balance amounts to the equivalent of a one-time bonus equal to about 4.8 percent of Bokiewicz's base salary. The original contact when he was hired included a $200,000 loan. Bobkiewicz says the City Council also cut the loan balance by $10,000 in 2014. With the new action Monday, that brings the outstanding loan balance down to $180,000.

Bobkiewicz has now been Evanston's city manager for seven years. In his first full year on the job, his base pay was $174,825.

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