MOUNT AIRY — The salary for the recently created position of town planner falls within the limits town administrators set when the search for a planner began last summer, Mayor Gerald R. Johnson Jr. said Monday.
During the previous 18 months the town had paid a private engineering consultant more than $100,000 for planning services. The mayor said during the summer the town hoped to hire a planner at a salary between $30,000 and $40,000 per year.
In December, the town announced the hiring of Teresa Merten, a design architect formerly with RTKL Associates Inc., an international architectural and engineering firm based in Baltimore.
However, thetown refused to disclose the salary for the new position, after months of promoting the idea as a significant money-saver for the town.
On Dec. 12, The Carroll County Sun filed a formal request for the salary information under federal and state Freedom of Information Act legislation. Salaries for public employees are basic public information under the legislation.
On Monday night, hours before the 30-daydeadline on the request was to expire, the mayor supplied The Carroll County Sun with the salary information. The town planner position in Mount Airy pays $33,000 annually, the mayor said.