Higher salary for new mayor agreed

Mustafa Eric

Independent editor

Remuneration for Stettler’s next mayor is likely to be set at $20,000 per year and two thirds of that amount for each councilor for the full term once the council finalizes the new salary policy before the next municipal election set for October this year.

During its regular meeting July 20, the town council had extensive discussions on the remuneration policy.

Among the issues were whether salaries for mayor and councilors should be set on an annual increase at a fixed rate or rates should be reviewed annually, how councilors should be compensated for their time and travels for committee meetings and their coverage for insurance purposes.

Councilor Al Campbell raised the issue of remuneration for ratepayers, residents who represent the town at various meetings or events. Campbell said that the County of Stettler had a policy on payments for such individuals and that he would like to see the town also develop a policy for such compensation.

At the end of the discussions, the rates for remuneration was set at $20,000 annually for mayor and $13,392 for councilors to remain valid for a full term.

Council instructed town staff to introduce a provision to the pay policy to provide for compensation for non-council, non-staff individuals if and when they represent town in an official capacity.

The new policy reflecting salary changes and the introduction of new principles is expected to be voted on during a future council meeting before the election date.

In other matters, the council agreed to a request for a property tax rebate of $946 to Apollo Lodge upon the request of the latter on grounds that the lodge building is being used for community purposes.

The council also agreed in principle to support a request by the Stettler board of trade to fund a training course for a staff member of the latter to enable the trainee to acquire necessary skills to assist economic development of the area.

Mayor Dick Richards brought up an issue at the end of the meeting which was not originally included in the agenda.

Richards said the latest storm which hit the town on July 12 had clearly demonstrated the need for an urgent renovation of the roof of the fire hall, a 30-year-old building.

He said he had communicated with reeve Earl Marshall of the county and they had agreed on the need to proceed with renovations without delay.

The council then agreed in principle to provide the town’s share of costs for the renovations in line with the statutory commitments.