Despite 22 years in his role as Mount Prospect's village manager, Michael Janonis ranked in the bottom half among 20 peers in a recent compensation survey.
The Mount Prospect village board set out to rectify that Tuesday when it voted Janonis a 5 percent raise that puts him in the thick of the top half of the 20 municipal leaders, bringing his salary from $175,950 to $184,747.
As part of the measure, Janonis' deferred compensation also will increase from $15,000 to $20,000 for 2014, while his car allowance of $6,000 remains unchanged.
Janonis' last raise was in January 2012. He voluntarily took two years without a pay increase prior to that while the village was making spending cuts and struggling with revenues.
Mayor Arlene Juracek said that although Janonis was not alone in not taking a raise, his "outstanding performance as village manager" during events of the past two years earned him the pay hike.
This included handling the April 2013 storms and flooding, addressing the backlog in street resurfacing and overseeing stormwater management projects. Juracek also noted the smooth transition in leadership in the human services, police and fire departments, as well as the AA+/Stable long-term rating of the village's 2014 general obligation bonds by Standard & Poor's.
Trustee Paul Hoefert praised Janonis' leadership and his visibility and accessibility to the community.
"He lives this place, he eats this place, he breathes this place," Hoefert said. "He is 24/7.
"When others didn't get a raise, he didn't take a raise," he added. "When you think about that, that's to me true leadership. I think we're blessed to have a guy like Mr. Janonis leading this village on the staff level."
Janonis, who has served as village manager since July 1992, was briefly overcome by emotion as he thanked the board for its support over the years.
"I really don't do anything," he said, crediting the staff of the village. "And I hope my wife is watching (the broadcast of the meeting)."