NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

April 17, 2014

Police, school officials fill list of highest-paid employees

NEWBURYPORT — Police Marshal Thomas Howard was the highest paid city employee in calendar year 2013 with a total package of $166,720, according to municipal records.

City officials released the salaries of city employees, which are public record, at the request of The Daily News.

The most recent list, which is for 2013, includes several top earners who are no longer employed by the city.

For instance, Superintendent of Schools Marc Kerble left his position last fall but is listed with a salary of $164,125. Superintendent of Schools Susan Viccaro now is paid $166,000, making her the second leading earner.

In another example of a highly paid employee no longer with the city, former Fire Chief Stephen Cutter is shown to have made $164,779, though he retired before the end of the year.

Accountants listed his salary for the part of the year he worked as $83,873. He also received $29,339 in income listed as “retirement eligible,” which means remuneration for extra tasks. Records show he also took in $51,566 in “non-retirement” money, which relates to unused sick time and vacation.

Several police officers are no longer with the force. Sgt. Al Maguire and Sgt. Mike Finnegan retired, and Sgt. Stephen Chaisson has left the department.

Fire Chief Christopher LeClaire, who replaced Cutter, earns $120,000 per year in straight salary.

Regarding the Police Department, city officials say that many officers earn in the $60,000-$80,000 range, but their totals can be more than the stated salary because they work overtime and independent details.

Several police officers earned significant amounts of overtime pay, including Chaisson ($34,214); William Steeves ($24,768); Richard Thurlow ($24,252); and Barry Salt ($24,032) — sums that are in addition to salary.

Mayor Donna Holaday earned $85,000 (plus a $3,000 stipend) in 2013, but this year makes $98,000 due to changes brought forth by the new city charter. High school Principal Michael Parent earned $119,933, while assistant School Superintendent Angela Crofford-Bik made $114,461 and Bresnahan Principal Kristina Davis’ salary was $101,910.

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