News Story

City Official Prospers In Pandemic As Businesses And Workers Struggle

While many lost income or even a life’s work, this Michigan mayor got a 13% pay hike

A Michigan mayor who helped feed a media narrative of dire fiscal problems facing local governments during the pandemic saw his total pay increase by 13% in 2020.

City of Westland Mayor Bill Wild enjoyed a 13% pay increase in 2020, going from $111,749 to $126,224. This happened even as many local businesses in the Wayne County city were shuttered and employees put out of work by government lockdowns.

Wild is also president of the Michigan Municipal League Board of Trustees. The Michigan Municipal League is a lobbyist for the state’s municipalities.

Last November, the Michigan Municipal League launched a media campaign to pressure state legislators into giving cities, villages and townships more taxpayer dollars.

Wild had a base pay of $109,116 in 2019, but he also received a $2,633 “salary adjustment,” for a total salary of $111,749 that year.

In the year the coronavirus pandemic struck, Wild’s base salary was increased to $111,905. He also had a $2,100 “on call allowance” and a $724 “salary adjustment.” He also cashed in unused vacation time for another $11,495, for a total pay of $126,224.

The mayor also received an additional $5,000 for expenses for both years, which was not included in the analysis of his pay. The salary data came from the city in a Freedom of Information Act request.

Wild didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.

The median household income in Westland was $50,710, according to the U.S. Census.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.