New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito has voluntarily given up her authority to decide how a large chunk of the council’s discretionary funding is distributed.
In its first meeting, the new council approved a long list of extra pay to be doled out to members. The speaker gets $25,000 and the majority leader $20,000, while ten members get $15,000 apiece. Thirty four other members get $8,000 each.
Elected officials pointed to the $13 million price tag to hold Tuesday’s public advocate runoff election that saw very low voter turnout as a reason to change the current procedure.
Good-government groups slammed the New York State Legislature on Wednesday for what one senator called “vampire voting” — dead-of-night votes to revive taxes that were supposed to die — to build much of the new $135 billion budget.