Esquimalt council will look to an independent third party to review their remuneration ahead of the 2018 civic election, after the federal government announced changes to the tax policy for elected municipal officials. Photo courtesy of Esquimalt Township

Third party review to assess Esquimalt council’s remuneration

Tax break eliminated by federal government shifts cost to municipality, says councillor

Esquimalt council will look to an independent third party consultant in January to review whether a realignment is necessary for their salaries.

The question of remuneration is on the table in response to a decision made by the federal government last March to end a tax exemption for municipal elected officials. Since 1947, under the federal Income Tax Act, one-third of an official’s income was collected tax-free, a nod to expenses related to the duties of the position.

According to the 2016 Statement of Financial Information from the Township of Esquimalt, Mayor Barb Desjardins’ remuneration was $48,225.20. Each of the six councillors collected $20,779.60 for their service.

At the Dec. 11 council meeting, Coun. Susan Low – who will not be running in next October’s municipal election – voiced support for the review.

“This is downloading tax burden onto the local government level,” Low said, stressing she doesn’t want the federal government to think it can do so without anyone taking notice.

To maintain the mayor and councillors’ current remuneration, council will consider raises to offset losses now that the entire salary from the Township is taxable.

Coun. Olga Liberchuk also supported the motion, saying people need to be compensated appropriately for the work they do.

“We just to make sure … that we ensure we attract candidates from all walks of life with various incomes, and that it’s not just reserved for people who are privileged enough to be able to afford a low wage at the council table,” she said.

In Langley, a similar review was conducted before council voted unanimously to increase the mayor’s remuneration by 11 per cent in 2019, while councillors will receive a salary that is 45 per cent of the mayor’s.

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

Just Posted

West Shore firefighters answer call to battle fires in north-central B.C.

Crews to help with structural fire protection in Fort St. James

Student group seeks cap on international tuition fees

UVic increased international fees 20 per cent for 2018-19

Victoria’s Global Village Store celebrates 30 years in business

The City’s first free-trade store sells products from 28 countries around the world

Heat and smoke raises health risks

Rick Stiebel - Sooke News Mirror Health risks arising from heat and… Continue reading

Esquimalt man faces four charges of sexual assault, investigators suspect more victims

71-year old Kit Wong practiced acupuncture from his home during the time of the assaults

‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin has died

Publicist Gwendolyn Quinn reports Franklin passed Thursday at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit

B.C. RCMP say Kinder Morgan protest camp to be dismantled today

RCMP say they will enforce a court injunction today and remove Trans Mountain pipeline protesters who have been camped outside a Kinder Morgan terminal in Burnaby.

Altidore nets 3 as Toronto drubs Whitecaps 5-2

Vancouver falls 7-4 on aggregate in Canadian Championship final

Ottawa intervenes to get B.C. ball player, 13, to Little League World Series

Before immigration issue was resolved, Dio Gama was out practicing the game he loves Wednesday

Pet goldfish invades small B.C. lake

Pinecrest Lake is located between Whistler and Squamish

Mounties deployed to help B.C. communities affected by wildfires

RCMP officers heading to places particularly within central, northern and southern B.C.

Quebec sets aside $900 million for companies hurt by U.S. tariffs

Premier Philippe Couillard says his government will make $863 million available over five years

Most Read