Council OKs raise for city manager

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Council OKs raise for city manager

City Council on Monday approved a 3 percent pay raise for Fairfield City Manager Art Pizzano.

Pizzano’s compensation is now $189,907, and this year marks his 15th as city manager.

“We’ve had this wonderful maturation from a young city, which we were back in the ’50s and ’60s,” Pizzano said. “(We) evolved in the ’70s and ’80s as a fast-growing kind of suburb, and now, over the last 15 years or so, I think we’ve matured and evolved into a much more full-service kind of community.”

When Pizzano began working for the city in 1998, he had experience as an urban planner and economic development director.

The city, he said, had already done a good job laying the groundwork for essential services like water, streets, police and fire. Under Pizzano’s charge, the city began to concentrate more on improving quality of life services, which included the development of Village Green and the surrounding facilities.

“It pulled the community together in ways we hadn’t had an opportunity to do before. It created a focus and a sense of place by which a community exhibits a great, wonderful pride in itself,” Pizzano said. “Neighbors kind of come together and really enjoy the community. We’ve lost a lot of that in this country as we’ve suburbanized. Fairfield had never had a downtown, and now it has a kind of a central gathering place where people can come and enjoy themselves.”

“We have a wonderful balance of residential and business (population). We have somewhere around 35,000 jobs in this community, which is really unheard of for a residential population of 44,000 people. I don’t know that anybody else comes close to that kind of number,” he said.

Pizzano recently received the Ohio City/County Management Association’s 2013 Career Achievement Award, and was fully deserving of the accolade, said Mayor Ron D’Epifanio.

“When he came in, we had morale problems, but he has a knack of a way he handles situations. The employees rallied around him. He has a special gift,” the mayor said.

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