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How Much Are Our City Officials Paid?

Santa Barbara Doesn’t Match City of Bell Excesses


While the City of Bell has now emerged as the poster child for bloated government excess—paying its (now ex-) city manager $787,000 a year, its police chief $457,000, and its mayor $96,000—its counterparts within the City of Santa Barbara are more modestly compensated.

By comparison, Santa Barbara City Administrator Jim Armstrong makes $231,000 a year plus benefits and retirement; Police Chief Cam Sanchez, $194,000; City Attorney Steve Wiley, $219,000; Fire Chief Andy DiMizio, $175,000; and Parks and Recreation czar Nancy Rapp, $158,000. While four of Bell’s five councilmembers make $96,000, Santa Barbara’s mayor Helene Schneider is paid $50,000, and her council colleagues make $40,000.

Uproar over Bell’s compensation packages has been intense, prompting the city manager to resign and the mayor to accept a 90-percent pay cut.

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