Sylvan officials get big pay increases

Sylvan Lake’s mayor and council are in for big pay increases next year.

Sylvan Lake’s mayor and council are in for big pay increases next year.

An independent remuneration citizen committee recommended that the mayor’s monthly salary be boosted by just over 20 per cent to $3,000 from $2,494. Councillors’ pay should increase 29 per cent to $1,500 from $1,157, the five-member committee recommended.

New compensation rates would kick in at the start of 2014.

Council approved the changes on Monday.

The committee reviewed council compensation in April and compared it with other communities.

“Even though the increase is substantial, particularly on a percentage basis, the committee was very fiscally aware that the increases still keep us slightly under the average,” says a report to council presented by committee chair Lani Rouillard.

When benefits are factored, compensation is slightly above the average in similar-sized communities.

Also reviewed by the committee was the prospect of making the mayor a full-time job with equivalent compensation.

Councillors Dale Plante and Sean McIntyre had suggested in March the committee should take a look at the mayor’s role and workload and whether it was time to make it a full-time position.

The report says the “committee was unanimous that this is not a topic for a town of our size at this time.”

Plante announced he plans to run for mayor in the October municipal election and will challenge incumbent Susan Samson and Matt Prete.

The only other change recommended was to increase reimbursement for attending planning and appeal board meetings to $60.