April 8th 2008
New Council takes a pay cut
Townsville Councillors have set their pay scale at a lower level than the figure recommended to them.
At today's first statutory meeting of the Townsville City Council, the Mayor and Councillors voted to reduce their pay by up to three per cent from the recommendation, which had placed Councillors at the top of the Level 6 pay bracket as the largest Council in this grouping.
The State Government's Independent Local Government Remuneration Tribunal ranked Townsville at the top end of the remuneration scale for Category 6 councils which include less populated city's such as Ipswich, Cairns, Rockhampton, Redland, Mackay and Toowoomba.
Townsville's councillor salary package will be lower than that of Cairns, and achieve savings of around $120,000 over the four year term.
Mayor Cr Les Tyrell said councillors today voted for the amendment to the recommended pay scale to send the right message to the community.
"We will be facing some tough financial challenges in coming years and it is extremely important that everybody is doing their bit to find savings and efficiencies where they can," Cr Tyrell said.
"Townsville City Council is now the largest regional council in the State with an annual budget of over $400 million. Councillors now have a full time job with full time roles and they will have more work and responsibility than ever before.
"Today's decision ensures that councillors are fairly remunerated but at the same time sends an important message to the community that we are serious about achieving savings right across the new amalgamated organisation."
The recommended pay scale for mayors and councillors on Category 6 councils is set as a percentage of the salary package of a State Member of Parliament.
Under the remuneration package approved today, salaries for the mayor and councillors are:
Mayor: Salary $135,419. or 107% of State MLA, 3% less than recommendation of $139,220
Deputy Mayor: Salary $94,920. or 75% of State MLA 2.5% less than recommendation of $98,080
Committee chairs: Salary $86,060. or 68% of State MLA 2% less than recommendation of $88,590
Councillors:Salary $83,529. or 66% of State MLA 1.5% less than recommendation of $85,430
All councillors on newly amalgamated councils across the State will receive a special loading set down by the Remuneration Tribunal. The loading will be phased out over four years.
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