On March 8, Portland City Council is expected to appoint five commissioners and two alternates to the City’s first Salary Commission. The commission, comprised of qualified human resources professionals with compensation experience, will lead the charge to establish salaries for the first 12 elected councilors, mayor and auditor in the new form of government beginning November 2024.
“We’re grateful that community members are bringing their expertise to establish salaries that attract a diverse and talented pool of future leaders – while fulfilling the City’s value of fiscal responsibility,” Mayor Ted Wheeler said.
City staff supported Mayor Ted Wheeler in narrowing the field of 13 candidates to those who will be considered for appointment next week. Applicants were scored based on five criteria:
Qualified human resources professional
Experience setting pay
Experience working in or with relevant mission-based, nonprofit, public and/or volunteer-driven organizations
Experience with community engagement or involvement
Experience engaging with diversity, equity and inclusion principles and practices
The five community members being considered for appointment to the Salary Commission are (alphabetical by first name):
Joni Marie Johnson
Alternate members will also be appointed and may be selected to move into a commission role if any of the appointed commissioners are unable to fulfill their duties. Alternate members being considered for appointment are (alphabetical by first name):
Ballot Measure 26-228, which passed in November 2022, included a package of reforms proposed by the Charter Commission. The changes, which will need to be implemented by the November 2024 election, include electing 12 district-specific city councilors instead of four commissioners. The City Charter also directs the Bureau of Human Resources to lead the work of a Salary Commission every two years, setting and evaluating the salaries for all elected positions.
The first Salary Commission will:
Conduct 11 meetings between March and August, with public comment opportunities.
Disseminate a public comment survey on draft salary proposals before adoption.
Make recommendations for the methodology of setting salaries to the Bureau of Human Resources for future Salary Commissions to consider.
Salaries must be established by Aug. 1, 2023.
Learn more about changes underway to the City's election system and form of government at Portland.gov/transition.