F Bellevue City Council. I guess transparency wasn’t on its mind at the Aug. 6 meeting. The council’s vote (Paul Cook and Thomas Burns the exceptions) to give the mayor and council members a raise was expected and which I supported a couple weeks back in these grades. What I didn’t support — and what no one knew about — was an 11th hour amendment that provides for an automatic 2% annual raise. So here’s your numbers: Current council salary is $11,000. That salary jumps to $17,000 in December 2020 and $18,769.38 by December 2025 — a whopping 70% pay hike over today’s salary. At least the mayor’s pay hike isn’t as bad — just 54.6% by 2025. That the council, with the mayor’s support, sneaked this past the public after the public hearing was held is disgraceful. I have to wonder if this was schemed weeks ago just to do an end around on Bellevue residents. I’m guessing the council and mayor didn’t care to hear from the public on the matter, and that’s no way to conduct the business of the city funded by taxpayers, many of whom probably don’t get automatic pay hikes year in and year out.