CTA calls for major changes to Council remuneration. And Council kicks the can down the road
Council on May 22, 2018 rejected the Ad-hoc Renumeration Committee’s proposed increase. Although not fully accepting Paul Pagnuelo’s recommendation of increasing Councillor’s salaries by 100%, a motion was passed to at least increase the Councillor salaries by a quarter of what Paul recommended.
Here is a summary:
Almost everyone understands the principle of ‘you get what you pay for.’ And everyone agrees that a person’s salary should be based on merit––a person’s qualifications, value and contribution. So why not apply this principle to the members of our town council?
On Monday, May 14, 2018, Paul Pagnuelo, Cobourg Taxpayers Association (CTA) director, delivered a presentation to Council that stated, unequivocally, that all members of Council should be paid more, and that it’s time to restructure elected-officials’ remuneration and “end the old paradigm and set a new one of fairness and equity.”
Paul said, “it’s time for fair pay.” The CTA analysis showed the wide disparity between the mayor’s base salary and that of the deputy mayor and councillors, which does not accurately reflect their respective roles and responsibilities. Paul and the CTA claim the recent increases recommended by the Ad Hoc committee are not enough and “taxpayers must realize that you get what you pay for.” If Cobourg is to attract the best and the brightest, remuneration must be higher. Currently, the salary paid councillors is below minimum wage.
The in depth presentation addressed numerous fundamental questions and Paul presented Council with three choices:
- Delay a decision (paralysis by analysis).
- Maintain the status quo (minor tweaks).
- Do what is fair, right and just in the eyes of the ordinary people (pay council what it’s worth).
In emphasizing the significance of this issue, and the need for principle-based leadership, Paul asked Council to consider what he called “a legacy decision.”
Alas, after discussion, Council kicked the can down the road.
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