Parksville council bumps its pay 11 per cent

Parksville council bumps its pay 11 per cent

Increase not a raise it’s to offset federal government tax changes, councillors say

Parksville city council has voted to increase mayor and council’s remuneration, but it’s not a pay increase, says Coun. Kirk Oates.

Oates made the motion at Wednesday’s (May 23) regular council meeting to increase the mayor’s remuneration by 11 per cent and to increase council’s and the deputy mayor’s remuneration by 10.5 per cent over the 2018 annual indemnity “in order to approximately maintain the current net financial remuneration of the City of Parksville mayor and council after the federal government amends the tax regulations to remove elected officials’ tax-free allowances.”

Oates also made a motion for the change in remuneration to become effective for the 2019 budget year, to correspond with federal government changes in tax rules. Council voted in favour of the motion. Councillors Leanne Salter, Sue Powell and Kim Burden were absent from the meeting.

“It’s not a pay increase, although that’s what it should have been, it’s just a keeping up with the times,” Oates said.

The remuneration would offset the impact of changes to federal governement tax regulations which remove the one-third tax-free allowance for elected officials starting in 2019.

The elimination of the one-third tax-free allowance was included in the federal government’s 2017 budget, but gave a starting date of Jan. 1, 2019 to allow municipalities “more time to adjust their compensation schemes.”

A number of governments have increased remuneration, including the Capital Regional District. Its board members voted at the May 9 meeting to increase remuneration for CRD executive staff members to offset the federal tax regulation changes.

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