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Austin City Council Finalizes New City Manager Hire To Tune Of $325,000 A Year

Callie Hernandez

Austin City Council members have made official the hiring of Spencer Cronk as the new city manager. The vote Thursday was unanimous and without debate.

Cronk, the current city administrator in Minneapolis, will start Feb. 12. Interim City Manager Elaine Hart will return to her previous job as chief financial officer.

Credit Courtesy City of Austin
Spencer Cronk will start as Austin city manager on Feb. 12.

Council members also finalized Cronk’s pay and benefits Thursday, voting to offer him an annual salary of $325,000, plus additional incentives. Hart made about $300,000 while in the position.

Cronk's base salary is higher than that of former City Manager Marc Ott when he left in 2016.

Cronk will also receive a $7,200 executive allowance per year, plus $4,500 per month for up to six months to cover temporary housing. The city will also reimburse him for a house-hunting trip.

In addition to a health insurance plan, he'll receive a $100 per year health allowance. He'll get 23 vacation days each year.

The city hired Cronk after coming under fire for a less-than-transparent hiring process. In an attempt to keep candidates’ identities secret, Council members and candidates changed a meeting room at the last minute to evade reporters and conducted interviews behind a security checkpoint at the airport.

Audrey McGlinchy is KUT's housing reporter. Got a tip? Email her at Follow her on Twitter @AKMcGlinchy.
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