Port Alberni city council to discuss pay raise

City councillors discussing raising their stipends isn't as though they are are sticking their faces in the public trough, city councillor John Douglas said.

Attracting more civic election candidates and making it easier for them to take time off work once they’re elected is behind one city councillor’s request for an increased stipend.

The request is being fronted by Coun. John Douglas, and is being discusses at Monday’s city council meeting.

Douglas’s request is multi-faceted.

He’s asking for councillors’ stipends to be increased to $14,000 per year, and the mayor’s to be increased to $35,000.

An annual two per cent increase is also on the menu.

He suggests compensation of one and a half times the regular stipend if a councillor acts as mayor.

Also that councillors be able to contribute nine per cent of their council earnings to a life insurance plan with matching contributions from the city.

And a computer, cellphone and office space are also on the list.

The council stipend increases will put Port Alberni on par with municipalities of similar size around the province, Douglas said.

Moreover, it will better enable councillors to do their jobs.

“I want to try and make it easier for a larger group of people to consider running for office,” Douglas said.“And once in, these measures will make it easier for councillors to take time off to tend to council business.”

Douglas—who works full time as a paramedic—used himself as an example.

“If I have to take time off I lose both salary and pension benefits,” he said. “That would go a long way in helping councillors who also work full time.”

As for the computer and cellphone, “We have to be able to communicate with people in the modern age,” Douglas said.

The request contrasts the city’s budget process, which is in full swing. Cutbacks by most departments have been the order of the day.

People’s first reaction will be that  politicians are sticking their faces in the trough, Douglas said.

“But there’s very little in the trough to begin with,” he said.

“This is mostly volunteer service and we’re paid very little.”

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

ARTS AROUND: Mistletoe Market on at Port Alberni gallery

Decorated grounds will remain open late on Fridays

Alberni wrestlers win senior boys’ division at Cougar Invitational

Members of the Alberni Wrestling Club travelled to Mill Bay last weekend

School bus seatbelt petition gains ground in Port Alberni

School District 70 trustee has pushed for seatbelts for 40 years

Vancouver Island chambers unite to protect marine-based tourism

Fears over an extended protection area for Southern Resident killer whales prompts action

Port Alberni merchants advocate for improvements to business district

Better lighting, public washrooms could change attitude about South Port

Port Alberni enjoys parade of boats in annual Sail Past

The fifth annual event drew a crowd at Harbour Quay

UK Prime Minister Theresa May wins party no-confidence vote, but troubles remain

May won the vote of 317 Conservative legislators with a 200-117 tally

B.C. trustee’s anti-LGBTQ comments got him barred from schools

Barry Neufeld calls vote to leave him off liaison list ‘workplace discrimination’

Firm says trees obstructing vision at Humboldt Broncos crash intersection

Sixteen people died and 13 others were injured in the collision at an intersection north of Tisdale

Man charged after B.C house fire triggers high-grade explosives

Thomas Daniel Kendall charged with causing bodily harm by failing to properly store explosives

Stop ‘renovictions,’ B.C. housing task force says

MLAs call for end to strata bans on renting vacant suites

Girl, 6, lured from elementary school, sexually assaulted: Vancouver police

Police are seeking dashcam footage from nearby Sexsmith Elementary School in South Vancouver

B.C. Liberals call for outside audit of Speaker’s office, NDP refuses

Auditor General implicated in Darryl Plecas accusations of impropriety

Three victims of ex-ski coach Bertrand Charest suing Alpine Canada

The victims are also seeking $150,000 each in punitive damages

Most Read