At the next Council meeting, John Henderson will make a motion to establish an ad hoc committee to review Council remuneration. He proposes that the committee consist of 7 citizens plus staff resources including HR. The 7 citizens would come from the existing advisory committees. There are more than 7 committees but presumably John means the seven that advise on policy (see list below). There are two reasons to review pay to Councillors: 1) The Federal tax law was recently changed so that 100% of pay is taxable instead of one third being classed as an allowance and tax exempt; 2) The last review was in 2011 when an increase of 13% was approved for Councillors. Note that remuneration is increased annually with a CPI adjustment. The intent is that an increase would be effective 1 December 2018 for the next Council.
Pay to Councillors is reported annually and the last report was in September 2017 for pay in 2016. A post at that time (link below) included the following table showing pay in 2016.
|County||$46,300 (as Warden)
$9,400 (as Cobourg Rep.)
|Health Board||$500 (est.)|
|Total||$92,600 (as Warden)
|$21,200||$21,900 (Police Bd)
The motion asks that the committee make recommendations on:
- What is expected of a Councillor – that is, what they should do.
- Responsibility Level
- Look at remuneration at other comparable Councils
- Compensation to Police Service Board members
John wants the report completed in time to present at the April 30th Council meeting.
It’s clear that the time commitment of the Mayor, Deputy Mayor and Councillors is significantly more than just Council meetings. They also attend committee meetings and many public events – their municipal job is close to full-time. The current occupation status of Councillors (using publicly available information) is:
- Mayor Gil Brocanier – Retired
- Deputy Mayor John Henderson – Retired
- Councillor Brian Darling – Retired
- Councillor Debra McCarthy – part time employed
- Councillor Forrest Rowden – Retired
- Councillor Aaron Burchat – Full time employed – transitioning to co-owner of retail business
- Councillor Suzanne Séguin – Co-owner of publishing business
Current nearby Council Pay – all are 7 member Councils
|Cobourg 2016||Port Hope 2018 (1)||Brighton 2015 (2)|
- Effective December 1, 2018
- Includes approx. $6K meeting allowance – total for Councillors is average.
Even with an increase of 30%, the pay for Councillors in Cobourg would still not equal a full time job on minimum pay.
Info and Links
- Policy Advisory committees (all committees here)
- Cobourg Economic Development Advisory Committee
- Cobourg Accessibility Advisory Committee
- Cobourg Planning And Sustainability Advisory Committee
- Cobourg Heritage Advisory Committee
- Cobourg Environmental Active Transportation Advisory Committee
- Cobourg Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee
- Downtown Coalition Advisory Committee
Update – January 15
At its regular meeting on January 15, Council passed the bylaw implementing the above with no discussion.