About a quarter of Miami Springs municipal employees earn more than $100,000 in salary and benefits, city records shows.
The city, with a population of 14,000, employs about 125 full-time employees. Of those, 31 earn in excess of $100,000 per year, according to an Aug. 12 “salary and benefits” report obtained by the Herald through a public records request.
The benefits include health insurance, longevity pay, Social Security tax and pension contributions. Benefits are a major consideration for city employees: Only four Miami Springs employees earn salaries of $100,000 or more.
Some of Miami Springs’ biggest earners, including salary and benefits, are:
• City Manager Ron Gorland, $191,972.
• Finance Director William Alonso, $168,300.
• Police Chief Pete Baan, $139,014.
• Information Technology Manager Jorge Fonseca, $108,085.
• City Clerk Erika Santamaria, $100,709.
• Building Official Skip Reed, $109,588.
• Public Works Director Tom Nash, $113,334.
• Golf Course Director Paul O’Dell, $112,630.
• Recreation Director Omar Luna, $111,399.
City Attorney Jan Seiden was not included in the list though city records show a $171,000 “department request” for professional legal services for the 2014-15 fiscal year. At the Aug. 11 council meeting, the city authorized a $12,433 payment to Seiden for the month of July. Seiden is an outside contractor, not a city employee.
“I would like to see a [salary and benefits] reduction of 5-10 percent for management, with no raises,” said Rosie Buckner, a longtime resident, who feels city leaders have a duty to rein in these high salaries.
Buckner proposed “no raises and pink-slipping for non-essential, part-time staff.”
There has been a nearly fourfold increase in city employees earning more than $100,000 per year, since 2011. Back then, only 8 employees reached this milestone, records show.
Gorland’s package is comparable to that of the new Miami city manager, Daniel Alfonso. Miami commissioners approved a $199,000 compensation package for Alfonso last March.
Gorland’s package of $191,972 is about 4 percent lower than Alfonso’s salary. However, Miami has a population of about 414,000 and is almost 30 times larger than Miami Springs.
Many employees who did not make the $100,000 cutoff were not too far behind. For example, Human Resources Director Lorretta Boucher earns $92,150.
“The community needs to get together and demand that they stop getting raises and make them give up 10 percent,” said Buckner, who frequently files public records requests to keep tabs on city spending. “Then we wouldn’t have to pay so much in taxes.”
Gorland and city commissioners did not respond to emails seeking comment.