Top Vail officials get merit raises as budget is cut |

Top Vail officials get merit raises as budget is cut

Melanie Wong
Vail, CO Colorado

VAIL, Colorado ” The town of Vail’s three highest-paid employees received raises earlier this week.

Town Manager Stan Zemler, Town Attorney Matt Mire and Municipal Court Judge Buck Allen were all given merit raises after their performance reviews were completed by the town council.

Mayor Dick Cleveland confirmed that raises were given, but declined to say how much, citing it as a “personnel matter.”

Previous to the raises, Zemler earned $160,325 per year, Mire earned $132,000 per year, and Allen earned $49.61 per hour, said Vail Human Resources Director John Power.

Allen, who was recently recognized for 30 years of service for the town, typically works about 17 hours a week, Power said.

The raises came at the same time the town council approved a $1 million budget cut which included two layoffs in the community development department, eliminating several vacant positions, and across the board cuts in all town departments.

Cleveland said that keeping salaries competitive is important during tough economic times. Despite the town’s budget cuts, the town’s customer and guest services won’t be affected, he said.

“The reason this round of budget cuts hasn’t affected service, is because we keep good employees,” Cleveland said. “In order to do that, it’s important that we keep their compensation competitive ” and that’s for all the employees in the town.”

Zemler, Mire and Allen were eligible for the same raises as the town’s other employees, which is up to 4 percent of their base salary, said Cleveland.

Other employees will be reviewed and their merit increases will be decided throughout the year. The pool of money reserved for merit raises has already been cut by $117,000 after the latest budget cut.

Staff Writer Melanie Wong can be reached at 970-748-2928 or

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