Despite recent pay increases, the annual salaries of Little Rock's mayor and city manager trail those of the top executives at the Little Rock wastewater authority, the state's largest airport and the regional water utility.
Members of the Little Rock Board of Directors on April 11 approved raises for Mayor Frank Scott Jr., City Manager Bruce Moore and City Attorney Tom Carpenter following the annual evaluations of the latter two employees.
Moore's salary was increased from $194,955 to $219,955. Board members also raised his life insurance from $1 million to $1.5 million and his monthly car allowance from $600 to $750.
In keeping with language in city code that says pay and benefits for the mayor must be "comparable" to the highest-ranking municipal official, city board members voted to raise Scott's salary from $160,000 to $200,000 during the same meeting.
Additionally, Scott's car allowance was increased from $500 to $750 per month and his life insurance from $1 million to $1.5 million, according to city records.
Carpenter's annual salary was increased from $153,500 to $186,385. No change was made to his $600 monthly car allowance.
The changes in pay and benefits for the mayor, city manager and city attorney were made retroactive to Jan. 1, city records show.
Even before the increase, Scott's pay outstripped that of the Pulaski County judge and the mayor of North Little Rock.
The annual salaries of Pulaski County Judge Barry Hyde and North Little Rock Mayor Terry Hartwick are $145,714 and $137,405.64, respectively.
Among the top officials at the city of Little Rock as well as the city's semi-independent government entities, the highest-paid employee is Gregorio Ramon, the outgoing chief executive officer of the Little Rock Water Reclamation Authority.
Ramon's upcoming retirement was announced at an April 19 meeting of the Little Rock Water Reclamation Commission. He has worked for the wastewater authority since October 2014.
His annual salary is $265,491. Ramon also receives an $800 monthly car allowance.
Bryan Malinowski, the executive director of Little Rock's Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport/Adams Field, is paid a base salary of $256,207.
The new salary was made effective June 1, 2022, because the Little Rock Municipal Airport Commission authorized a 5% merit pay increase from Malinowski's previous salary of $244,007, as well as a $25,000 bonus, records show.
Malinowski is also provided with a company vehicle, according to airport spokesman Shane Carter.
He was named the airport's executive director in November 2019 after previously serving in the role on an interim basis.
As chief executive officer of Central Arkansas Water -- the regional water utility that was created because of an agreement between the cities of Little Rock and North Little Rock more than 20 years ago -- Tad Bohannon receives a base annual salary of $245,617.22. His car allowance amounts to $7,280 annually, or roughly $600 per month.
Bohannon was appointed Central Arkansas Water's chief executive officer in January 2016 after briefly serving as the utility's interim head. He previously worked as the utility's chief legal counsel.
Other local officials with annual salaries above $180,000 include Bryan Day, the executive director of the Little Rock Port Authority ($192,044.37); Nate Coulter, the executive director of the Central Arkansas Library System ($191,900.80); and Gina Gemberling, the president and chief executive officer of the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau ($185,000).