City Beat

Sacramento City Council extends city manager’s contract

City Manager John Shirey
City Manager John Shirey

City Manager John Shirey will remain in Sacramento’s top administrative job through November 2016 after the City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to extend his contract.

The agreement will keep Shirey in the position through the 2016 mayoral election, the expected completion of the Sacramento Kings’ new downtown arena and the development of housing, shops and restaurants along the 700 block of K Street.

Shirey smiled and shook hands with Mayor Kevin Johnson after the vote was taken. He and the mayor had negotiated the terms of the new pact.

“You have been unanimously asked to serve a longer term in the city of Sacramento,” Johnson said. “Congratulations.”

There was no debate or discussion in front of the public Tuesday night. The council’s closed-door meeting agenda said council members were to discuss Shirey’s performance and receive an update on his contract from the mayor prior to Tuesday’s open session.

Shirey oversees city operations, including the budget and the city’s 4,300 employees.

Shirey will see a 1 percent increase in his earnings, bringing his total base salary to $268,423 per year. But according to the terms of his contract, Shirey also will increase his contribution to his CalPERS pension account by one percentage point.

Shirey makes more than any other city manager in the Sacramento region, according to the latest data from the state Controller’s Office, which shows that only 10 city managers in California earned base salaries higher than $268,000 in 2013. The state has about 480 cities.

The new contract will expire on Nov. 18, 2016 – more than five years after Shirey was hired as city manager in August 2011. He will be the longest-serving city manager in the past decade.

Before Shirey was hired, three different city managers led the city in just more than a year.

“I’m very happy for this city, and I look forward to serving you for the next year and a half,” Shirey said at the end of Tuesday’s meeting. “I do believe this is a city on the move. This is a strong team of the mayor, City Council, myself and many great people who work for this city. ... I assure you that me and my team will not let you down in the next year and a half.”