Roanoke City councilwoman concerned about Mayor Lea’s $2,500 stipend for personal vehicle use

Councilwoman Moon Reynolds said this was not an appropriate time to approve a stipend

ROANOKE, Va. – WSLS followed up on Monday’s heated exchange between Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea and Councilmember Stephanie Moon Reynolds.

At Monday’s meeting, Moon Reynolds did not want to vote in favor of the budget because Reynolds learned the mayor was getting a $2,500 stipend for personal vehicle use.

Moon Reynolds felt it was not the appropriate time to approve a stipend because many people are still recovering from the pandemic.

She believed some do not have the income after seeing an increase in property taxes and some people do not have employment.

WSLS wanted to get answers after many voiced concerns about the heated exchange.

At one point during Monday’s meeting, there was a stipend for the mayor’s personal vehicle use in the past.

“Local mileage was granted in past years as a line item in the council’s budget, but back in 2000 up until the time Mayor Bower’s was mayor, no mileage was granted currently there is already an administrative policy that allows for reimbursement,” Moon Reynolds said.

However, Lea argued, that he uses his personal car for city business.

“That all that is a posturing gesture by Councilmember Moon Reynolds, this budget includes the highest funding for community safety than we ever had.”

WSLS reached out to the city to find out specifically when there was a stipend or mileage available for mayors and have not yet heard back.

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