Garramone To Get a Raise While Council Asked to Borrow 6.6M
June 19th 2012 · 1 Comment
City Council attorney, Anthony Garramone, is up for a raise this week. Garramone is a retired City Court Judge that served from 1981 until he retired in 2003 to challenge then Mayor Tim Julian in the 2003 election. Julian went on to win the election.
This comes just a couple months after the toughest budget the city has seen in history. With no reserve funds and a depleted Water Trust fund, the City is asking to once again approve $6.6 million in borrowing just to pay their bills, with an anticipated $10 million more later in the year. The City has also seen three credit downgrades since February. There was some talk at the time that Garramone requested a raise in pay, but it never happened. This resolution would bring his pay from $975 every two weeks to $1,057 every two weeks, starting March 31. That would bring his salary to $27,482 per year as a part-time advisor to the Council.
The Council agreed to forego their automatic pay increases during the budget review and have voted to put the question of health benefits to a public referendum. Garramone’s position does not include health insurance.
Councilman Frank Vescera, D-1, said this was “a deal negotiated and agreed upon before the budget.” Vescera says he will support it because he “won’t go back on his word.”
Garramone was also a Councilman back in the 60’s until a young Lou LaPolla beat him in a primary at the age of 23. LaPolla went on to serve as the longest serving mayor in Utica’s history in the 80’s and 90’s. After that defeat, Garramone was appointed Council Attorney until his election as City Court Judge in 1981.
After the 2003 loss to Julian, Garramone was again appointed City Council Attorney, where he played a major role in the investigation into former Police Chief C. Allen Pylman. Garramone resigned during the end of that controversial investigation that never led to any charges levied. He cited health reasons and Pylman was ultimately paid to leave the position by the Roefaro administration. That led to the infamously botched appointment of Roefaro friend, Dan LaBella, as Police Chief. The state later ruled that the appointment was a violation of civil service laws. However, a few years ago, the Common Council again appointed Garramone as their attorney.