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Town Supervisor plays gender card in raise fight

Sheila Meegan defends proposed 29% pay raise
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Posted at 10:52 PM, Nov 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-07 22:52:12-05

West Seneca’s Town Supervisor says increasing her salary by 29% is a matter of gender equity.

“There is great disparity in salary between the women and the men,” Town Supervisor Sheila Meegan told a room full of residents at a public budget hearing Monday night.

“Unlike my predecessor, I am a woman,” she said.  The comment was met with jeers and boos from the crowd.

“[Being] a female has nothing to do with it. Seventeen thousand dollars has a lot to do with it,” resident Dale Clarke told 7 Eyewitness News.

As outlined in the 2011 Town Budget, Meegan’s predecessor Wallace Piotrowski earned a salary equal to her current salary.  However, Meegan argues Piotrowski actually earned more than $80,000 once health benefits and the budget stipend was factored in. 

The Town Supervisor position no longer receives health benefits.

Meegan argues the proposed salary increase to $80,000 is appropriate for the job.

“This position deserves that [salary] with the responsibilities that go with this job and the time and effort that is put into this job.  It’s about the job title, it’s not about me personally,” Meegan said.

An overwhelming number of West Seneca constituents who attended the public meeting vehemently disagreed with Meegan’s stance.

“It is unpopular, it’s unrealistic, it’s unfair to all of us who put you in office,” one resident told Meegan.

“That’s the problem, you’re not listening to the public,” another resident said.

A special session has been scheduled for November 14th at 7 P.M. to vote on the budget.