Council OKs Raise For Town Manager

By on September 13, 2017

Matthew CavalloThe Verona Town Council voted unanimously to raise the salary of Township Manager Matthew Cavallo on Monday night, as part of a two-year extension of Cavallo’s contract.

Cavallo was hired in November 2015 at an annual salary of $120,000, the bottom of the advertised salary range for the position. The ordinance passed Monday lifts his 2017 salary to $135,000. It will increase to $139,050 in 2018 and $143,222 in 2019, the two years covered by the new contract.

Deputy Mayor Michael Nochimson said before voting that the Council has been “very frugal” in giving out municipal salary increases, which have been 2% to 3%. “In this case it is above that,” Nochimson conceded, “but it is very important to note that the leadership that Matt has demonstrated, the savings, the aptitude financially, the listening, the communicating and bringing everything together has been impressive.” He also noted that there are no “hidden gimmicks” to Cavallo’s pay, explaining that there is no longevity pay and no vehicle allowance. When former Manager Joseph Martin retired on July 14, 2015 he was being paid more than $195,000 and had a car allowance.

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Councilman Alex Roman said that, in determining the increase in Cavallo’s salary, the Council did evaluations of his work. “We’ve managed to save hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars, and overhauled the township’s administrative and employment practice,” Roman said. “We’ve overhauled technology. We’re doing a lot of major capital projects and the biggest thing for me is the tone from the top matters. We were looking for a manager who was willing to set high expectations for his staff, to grow people, to drive people to be their best and to work with the community to meet all its goals.”

Mayor Kevin Ryan praised Cavallo for the changes he has made. “This is the second administration that Michael and I have worked under,” he said, “and I couldn’t be more happy with the change in tone in the way government is functioning, the relationship with the Council and the manager.”

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“This,” Ryan added, “is one of the easiest votes that I’ve ever had to cast.”

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