Report: Mayor Murray paying top aides more than McGinn did

SEATTLE -- Mayor Ed Murray is paying two deputy mayors and a policy and innovation director $170,000 each a year, and a communications director $140,000 – about one-third more than former Mayor Mike McGinn paid for comparable positions when he took office in 2010, according to The Seattle Times.

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The Times said Murray’s staff salaries are comparable to those of former Mayor Greg Nickels, who left office in 2009. Nickels paid his deputy mayor, Tim Ceis, $187,000 in his final year while the mayor made $167,000. His communications director, Robert Mak, made $160,000, the Times said.

McGinn’s highest paid deputies started at $125,000 a year, and his first communications director made $95,000, the Times said.

Murray’s salaries are somewhat lower than in King County government and the cities of Bellevue, Portland and San Francisco, which were used to establish comparables for Murray’s staff, Dwight Dively, King County budget director who headed Murray’s transition team, told the Times.

King County Executive Dow Constantine, for example, earns $216,000 a year, while his deputy, Fred Jarrett, makes $195,000. Murray makes $180,000; McGinn made $170,000.