Countering claims with facts

To the Editor,

On March 3, Mr. Zielinsky stated that Council voted to double the salary for me that was being paid to the prior City Manager which would mean I was going to be paid $150k per year plus my health insurance premiums! Did you make that FACT up Mr. Zielinsky? Let me help you with your math skills. The former CM was being paid $75k per year by salary ordinance passed on July 20, 2016, and he also received health insurance coverage with an approximate cost of $7k per year, which totaled a compensation package of approximately $82K a year for the CM position. The young man had little experience, had no degree, and probably had never stepped in the city of Weirton prior to his being appointed to the position. I have lived in the city of Weirton my entire life (all 68 years), have college degrees, and have not just municipal experience (over 10 years as the city attorney) but served in other high-level management positions. So, what were my totally unreasonable salary demands Mr. Zielinsky? I asked for $84k as a salary and did not require health benefits for my wife and I. The cost to the City for health benefits for a married couple is approximately $13k a year in premiums. So, explain your high-level math calculations and how $84k is twice $82k? So, no Mr. Zielinsky, I didn’t ask, nor receive, twice the amount. But you fabricated a really nice story, factually, grossly inaccurate and completely intellectually dishonest.

And let’s complete this first thread. I spoke to the Mayor about the position, expressed my interest, and shared my salary requirements. He asked for my Curriculum Vitae which I sent him. I never had any discussions with any city councilmen about the job or the salary. I asked for $84k and would accept nothing less. The Mayor and Council could have said no deal and that would have been the end of it. No hard feelings. But the Mayor came back to me after speaking with the Council, and they supported my nomination and my salary requirement. There was no quid pro quo. To be honest, I had no idea that they were still being paid the amount that council was being paid in 1991. I thought it was a joke when I did find out when I was reviewing the salaries for all the other employees. Think about this for a minute. Three members of council voted against the pay raises for council. All seven of the council members supported my nomination. What quid pro quo Mr. Zielinsky? Sorry to ruin your imaginary conspiracy theory. But a nice piece of fiction.

Joe DiBartolomeo