South Peace News
Members of the new Big Lakes County council will each get paid the same honourarium as the outgoing council.
At its regular meeting Oct. 11, the last before the municipal elections Oct. 16, council approved the rates of honourarium for council members and at-large representatives.
“On review of the comparative data for similar municipalities, Big Lakes County’s honourarium rates are in line with rates paid by municipalities of similar population and complexity,” says a report from Heather Nanninga, director of corporate services.
Honourariums for council and at-large representatives are annually reviewed at the organizational meeting in October, she notes.
However, that changed at the last meeting.
“Current council members are much more informed about the work than new councillors would be,” CAO Roy Brideau says.
“You are in a better position to decide whether this is fair.”
Another reason was given by Nanninga.
“No new councillors want to give themselves a raise at their first meeting,” Nanninga says.
Information from other municipalities was researched to determine rates of honourarium.
“Given the upcoming election [Oct. 16], administration opted to conduct a compensation review and benchmark current Big Lakes County honourarium rates with other regional municipalities,” Nanninga says. “If changes are necessary, it would be expedient for the current council to make them.”
Council members and at-large appointees are entitled to an honourarium and allowance for their county service.
A monthly allowance is paid to the reeve of $1,200, deputy reeve for $900, and councillors for $800.
An honourarium of $250 per day shall be paid to all council members and at-large appointees for all meetings authorized by council.
Each council member also receives a cell phone allowance of $100 per month.