The Michael Scott style of management must be infectious.
In Scranton, Penn., home of the mythical Dunder Mifflin paper company, the mayor has reduced the pay of all city workers, including his own, to the federal minimum wage — $7.25.
Let’s hope Mayor Chris Doherty doesn’t need a firefighter or cop anytime soon. He’s not likely to receive quality service.
NPR reports Doherty made the move after city council voted to reject a proposed tax hike. Scranton, the sixth largest city in the state, had only $5,000 in the bank and owed $1 million in pay to its 400 or so employees.
There’s no indication in the article that salaries for city workers are out of control — one firefighter said his gross income was $1,500 every two weeks. Now his check is for $600 after deductions. He’s probably pawning the fire station’s Dalmation to pay his mortgage.
Employees are suing. Lackawanna County Judge Michael Barrasse issued an injunction but the mayor ordered the city issue paychecks based on the minimum wage.
A protracted legal battle is just what a city with a $16 million budget shortfall needs.
I’ve not looked closely at Scranton’s budget woes, but why didn’t the mayor do the American thing and simply declare bankruptcy?
After all, what’s good for General Motors is good for America … and maybe Scranton.