If elected, I have promised that I will ask questions on all our behalf. It is important that we as taxpayers know what is going on at City Hall and what is being discussed by our elected officials.
Until I asked the City for a report on council salaries (if such a report existed), we would not have known that a report on salary increases had been commissioned and seen by the Mayor and Council. That isn’t right. It should have been made into a public document when it was seen by the Mayor and Council. Not only that, but the document should have been discussed at a public meeting of Council. It should not simply have been talked about behind closed doors (like the Nursing school at the Civic Centre idea).
No motion has been made on the document’s recommendations – whether to accept or reject them. Nothing has been ratified in an official Council meeting.
Reference has been made online to “Regulation 15.” It is important to know that it was this outgoing Mayor and Council who created these Regulations on November 19, 2018. They made their own rules. These aren’t rules that were made by someone else.
Prior to this, the existing Remuneration Regulations were brought in under Mayor Greeley in 2010, and also included annual raises through 2013. We froze council remuneration during the 2013-2017 council for our full term. This is where things stood until this current council brought in the “new” regulations on November 19, 2018.Take a look at the Regulation.
It says “Any recommendation for a change in the Council remuneration from such review shall be implemented not prior to the first month of office for the next elected Council.” Could the new Council choose to implement the recommended salary increases when it takes office? I don’t see anything in Regulation 15 that would prevent that.
This Regulation does not indicate, in my opinion, that the increase can’t come into effect until 2025. It just spells out when the recommendation (made by a previous Council in this case) can be implemented (by the new Council, which will be elected this month).
The important thing here is that we should have known about this report, and it should have been discussed at a public meeting of Council. We should not have to ask for reports from the City. They should be available to us. We have a right to know what our Mayor and Councillors are doing. This is about transparency in decision making.
I’ve committed to you publicly that I will not support any salary increases for Mayor or Council. I will also commit to ensuring any reports that Council receives will be available to you, and you’ll know where I stand on every issue. You won’t have to find out as the result of an information request!I would like to know who else running for Council will commit to NO increases in salary for the Mayor and Council? I’ll have some more questions in the coming days.