Public input on councillors pay

THE Local Government Remuneration and Discipline Tribunal is seeking submissions from anyone wanting to have a say on councillor remuneration for 2013.

Tribunal chairperson Adrian Bloomfield said the tribunal was about to start reviewing the remuneration levels for Local Government councillors which would apply from January 1 next year.

"In carrying out its functions, the tribunal consults widely and provides the opportunity for councils, councillors, interest groups and members of the public to raise matters they would like the tribunal to give special consideration to, when making its annual determination," he said.

Mr Bloomfield urged anyone who would like to have a say on the matter to make a written submission to the tribunal by Friday, October 5.

Whitsunday mayor Jennifer Whitney, who currently earns $109,719 (plus superannuation) said she would like to see salaries increase.

"A lot of people will want to see us working for nothing but what they've got to realise is if you don't pay people appropriately you don't get the calibre of person or commitment," she said.

Cr Whitney said adequate pay could mean the difference between a councillor being "involved or committed".

"Involved means you participate when it suits. Committed means you breath it," she said. Cr Whitney said the Whitsunday Regional Council area was currently rated as a 'category 4' area, which she would like to see increased to a 'category 5'. Under a category 5 rating the mayor's salary would increase to $130, 292 and councillors' would receive an increase to $75,432, from the current level of $58,288.

The matter was raised at yesterday's ordinary Council meeting in Bowen where Cr Whitney said she would be seeking advice on lodging a submission to have the current remuneration levels reassessed.

Current pay

Mayor - $109,719

Deputy mayor - $68,575

Councillor - $58,288

Plus 12 per cent employer super contribution for each of these employees.

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