City manager gets glowing review

MARQUETTE – Marquette City Manager Bill Vajda has received an overwhelmingly positive performance evaluation from the Marquette City Commission.

The commission on Monday recommended a 2.35 percent increase in pay for Vajda, bringing his salary to $124,806 a year.

The new City Charter requires an annual review performance for the city manager, and in July, the commission approved a new evaluation format and date.

Vajda has met all the charter requirements for the position and received the highest rating in all other performance categories. While looking at compensation, a subcommittee composed of commissioners Sara Cambensy, Jason Schneider and Frederick Stonehouse looked at other commissioners’ recommendations, comparable local positions, other municipalities and a previous salary adjustment made in January.

The commission was pleased with the new format.

Schneider said the evaluation process was more comprehensive this time while Commissioner J. Michael Coyne said the process also involved more than checkmarks and included commissioners’ comments.

“I think a lot of us put a lot of thought into this,” Commissioner Don Ryan said.

Mayor Johnny DePetro said “there was a lot more homework” than in the past, but the process was constructive.

Vajda said the charter mandates a “routine, repeatable” way to evaluate his performance, and that method is twofold: to determine if he’s performing his duties and how well he’s performing them.

He noted his feedback came from “seven people with seven views.”

“It’s a good way to put an overall view,” Vajda said.

The commission also approved the favorable annual performance evaluation of City Attorney Ron Keefe. However, no compensation increase was considered because he is paid on a retainer basis and his pay for legal services is approved as part of the annual budget.

Christie Bleck can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250. Her email address is