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CRA, interim executive director agree on contract; Jacobsen’s annual salary $107,500

By Staff | Sep 24, 2008

The Cape Coral Community Redevelopment Agency agreed Tuesday to a three-year contract with its interim executive director, John Jacobsen, assigning him permanent status and paying him an annual salary of $107,500.

The contract calls for a guaranteed 3 percent cost-of-living salary increase each year, the possibility of a 5 percent increase after six months contingent on a majority vote of the CRA board, and any bonuses the board approves.

Jacobsen is a 27-year resident of Cape Coral and spent eight years as a CRA board member. He has been involved in community organizations such as the Rotary Club of Cape Coral and the Council for Progress, and founded Intergraphic Group, a marketing and graphic design firm in the Cape’s downtown area in 1995.

Jacobsen received support from members of the public in addition to CRA board members, who passed the contract unanimously.

“It was a great, great move by the board. He’s well qualified,” said Stephen Luta, a real estate broker based in Fort Myers.

“The man’s full of common sense and that means a lot,” said downtown businessman and realtor Elmer Tabor.

City Councilmember Jim Burch, the city’s liaison with the CRA, said he supports Jacobsen for the position but questions the amount of his compensation.

“I would be remiss if I didn’t bring up the salary here, which is considerably higher than the previous director’s salary,” Burch said.

The former director, Chris Norton, collected an annual salary of $95,000, and left in June after six months on the job.

CRA Chairman Jason Tramonte explained that Jacobsen’s salary of $107,500 is close to the average for CRA directors.

“The medium range for this type of job is at the $107,000 mark,” Tramonte said.

He added that a $5,000 moving fee given to Norton was not needed this time.

Jacobsen will also receive health, accidental death and disability, and term life insurance benefits, and a contribution of the equivalent of 12 percent of Jacobsen’s salary by the CRA to his pension plan.

The contract takes effect Oct. 1 and expires Oct. 31, 2011. Jacobsen is currently making $75 per hour in his interim role.