Nice work of you can get it! Eagle Mayor Phil Bandy has a full time job with his city and another 30 hour gig with BSU, prompting at least one Eagle citizen to call for a rollback in his city salary by city councilors. THE GUARDIAN WILL GLADLY POST AN UNEDITED RESPONSE FROM THE EAGLE MAYOR.
By SAUNDRA McDAVID
Eagle Mayor Phil Bandy recently accepted a position as the Associate Director for the National Geothermal Data System in the Geosciences Department of Boise State University. This is a long term paid position where he will be assisting with project management and using his bureaucratic experience in outreach to governmental agencies. The position is 30 hours per week and comes with health insurance and PERSI benefits. He has been working at this position since January 12th, but as of February 11th he had not formally announced his second job to the city council or the citizens of Eagle, leaving Eagle residents wondering why the secrecy? Is the mayor focused on the city of Eagle, or distracted by his new duties with BSU? After this article was published on the Voice of Eagle message board Bandy did post a notice in the Valley Times Newspaper on February 15th, claiming he took the job “to benefit my family and to support my long-term career plans.”
The timing of this comes at a critical time for a city which is continually reviewing cost cutting measures and some who would like to see the mayor’s position and salary cut back to part time. Bandy was a city councilman in 2007 when the Eagle city council voted to approve a dramatic increase in salary due to the mayor’s position being changed from part time to full time. Shortly after that decision was made, Bandy announced he was running for mayor. During the campaign, when some of the mayoral candidates were claiming the mayor’s position was not about the salary and offered to decrease the amount, Bandy was justifying the salary claiming that the job required a full time person who would be putting in far more than 40 hours a week. After Bandy was elected, he stated that the job duties also required a full time assistant, who is now also on the city payroll. The yearly cost to Eagle taxpayers for the mayor and his full time assistant is now $146,732. Are Eagle citizens getting their money’s worth?
Now many are questioning how Eagle’s full time mayor, with a full time salary and a full time assistant, has time to work as an Associate Director at BSU. All of this while the city is experiencing staffing and budget cuts and is open only four days a week. Last year, amid these budget cuts, salary reductions and layoffs, the city council voted to decrease their salary by 50%. Mayor Bandy offered up a meager 2.5% cut for the mayor’s position while imposing a higher cut on the city staff salaries. Bandy’s new job leaves many people wondering if he is positioning himself for an exit from City Hall, at the expense of Eagle taxpayers. Moonlighting poses yet another ethical dilemma for Eagle’s mayor who will likely face increased scrutiny of the hours he dedicates to the city he is supposed to be running. He now owes the people of Eagle an explanation of how he intends to do two jobs at once, especially after he justified the increase in the mayor’s salary by stating the job required more than 40 hours a week. Are there safeguards that will assure the people that city hall property such as telephones, computers, copy machines and time are not being used for the mayor’s second job? There is a difference between having a full time job and having a full time commitment to a job. Can a moonlighting mayor claim he is committed full time to the citizens of Eagle? Mayors of Eagle’s neighboring cities indicate no. Both Meridian Mayor Tammy De Weerd and Nampa Mayor Tom Dale, who earn salaries comparable to Eagle’s mayor, indicated they would never consider taking a second job while working full time as elected politicians in their respective cities.
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