Richmond council set to approve new 3-year contract with city manager

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Richmond council set to approve new 3-year contract with city manager
Laura Snideman (Photo credit: City of Richmond)

By Kathy Chouteau

The Richmond City Council on Tuesday is set to approve a new three-year contract with City Manager Laura Snideman, who became the first woman appointed to the position in the city one year ago.

The council decided on establishing a three-year contract with Snideman following a recent performance review, and will vote at its regular meeting Tuesday to formalize it.

If approved, Snideman’s contract would commence Jan. 5, 2021 and extend to Jan. 31, 2024, with her annual salary staying at its current level of $255,000 and possible future increases occurring based on job performance. Her total salary including benefits is $366,552.

As part of Snideman’s new contract, in the event of her termination, she’ll receive a minimum severance payment equal to nine months of her salary; provided, however, that she’ll be entitled to an additional one month of severance, for up to a total of no more than 12 months of severance, for each full year that she serves as city manager, per City Council Agenda documents. Snideman’s total severance would not exceed her monthly salary amount multiplied by the number of months remaining on the unexpired term of the contract.

At $255,000, Snideman’s base salary comes in just above the Contra Costa County median base salary for city managers. A City of Richmond staff compensation review for city managers in the County and in Fairfield revealed that the median base salary for County cities is $251,274 and the average is $252,064, according to City Council Agenda documents. Pleasant Hill has the highest base salary in the County at $285,468, while Pinole has the lowest at $231,750. Per the staff’s data, the Fairfield city manager’s base salary is $265,200.