Waynesboro: Hamp salary, benefits trail Walker’s

Story by Chris Graham

Waynesboro City Council has agreed in principle on an employment agreement that will pay new city manager Mike Hamp a $115,000 base salary and provide him with a three-month severance.

That salary and benefits package trails slightly that which had been given to Hamp’s predecessor in the city manager’s office, Doug Walker, who was making $125,000 a year after receiving raises during his five-plus-year tenure and had in his working agreement with city council a six-month severance package that sent him out the door in June after his forced resignation with a $128,437 check.

That Hamp will not stand to benefit in that fashion should the relationship between himself and the city council turn sour as did that of the new council and Walker was the result of a promise made by the conservative bloc on city council led by Vice Mayor Frank Lucente, who felt that the compensation package afforded to Walker was excessive and who vowed to curb the excesses in the dealing with Walker’s replacement.

It may be an aid in that respect that Hamp, 41, a native of Waynesboro and a 15-year veteran of Waynesboro city government who had served as assistant city manager since 1995, would not seem the type to either pack up and leave for another job or alternatively want to risk bucking the system to the point where his job could ever become in jeopardy.

“I am humbled by this opportunity and I look forward to working with the many dedicated and community-minded employees in service to our city council and the citizens of our community,” Hamp said in a statement to The Augusta Free Press on his appointment today. “I am ever confident that our organization will meet the challenges and opportunities that we encounter in a determined manner, applying our individual and collective talent while remaining attentive to opportunities to improve our organizational performance where necessary. I am grateful to the members of city council for the confidence they have expressed in me, and I am committed to fulfilling the expectations they have expressed for me and our organization,” Hamp said.

Hamp’s hiring was approved on Tuesday morning by a 4-0 vote of city council. Hamp had served as the interim city manager since the June 30 resignation of Walker and was apparently the only candidate considered for the job.

Walker had been hired in 2002 after a lengthy national search for a new city manager following the retirement of former city manager Schuyler Giles.

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