The Washington Post

Arlington County officials get raises

Three top Arlington County employees were awarded raises of 5 percent and 10 percent, pushing their compensation to the second-highest among Northern Virginia jurisdictions.

County Manager Barbara Donnellan will make $252,918 this year. County Attorney Stephen MacIsaac will make $211,341 with $30,218 in deferred compensation. Both received 5 percent ­raises.

County Clerk Hope Halleck received a 10 percent raise, to $102,895 from $93,541.

The Arlington County Board unanimously and without comment approved the raises in the last 45 seconds of an abbreviated meeting Tuesday night. Board Chairman J. Walter Tejada (D) announced a vote on amendments to the officials’ employment contracts but did not spell out what those amendments were. The documents were made public Wednesday after a Washington Post inquiry.

The salaries were set after officials conducted a comparison with pay rates in Fairfax and Prince William counties and the city of Alexandria, said Marcy Foster, Arlington’s human resources director.

Arlington County, which has been somewhat insulated from the recession because of continued growth in real estate taxes for the past few years, expects a budget gap of $25 million to $50 million and a possible tax increase in fiscal 2014.

In November, the County Board told Donnellan to cut spending by $11 million in the $1 billion county budget. She ordered a hiring slowdown, early retirement offers to some employees and departmental expenditure reductions.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, after evaluating its executives, decided not to give any raises to its top officials “because of fiscal conditions,” county spokeswoman Merni Fitzgerald said. The Fairfax County executive makes $277,947 and the county attorney makes $220,062. The county clerk, who retired at the end of 2012, was paid $97,181.

Alexandria pays its city manager $247,449, its attorney $211,056 and its clerk $132,445. Prince William County pays its county executive $215,312, its attorney $190,072 and its clerk $107,399.

Patricia Sullivan covers government, politics and other regional issues in Arlington County and Alexandria. She worked in Illinois, Florida, Montana and California before joining the Post in November 2001.


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