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

Township of Esquimalt

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Product seized from a Victoria cannabis compassion club for a second time

The Cannabis Buyers Club has been operating on Johnson Street since 2001

Victoria International Airport deemed the most efficient for its size

Ranking appears in a report comparing airports across three international areas

Victoria police investigating chop-shop found in Beacon Hill Park

Police asking public to register bikes with them in case lost or stolen

Driver slapped with $483 ticket for excessive speeding in Saanich construction zone

Police traffic unit reminds drivers to slow down in McKenzie interchange

Province expands substance use teams to address overdose crisis

People who use substances to have greater access to health care services

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 13

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

COVID-19 gives B.C. First Nation rare chance to examine tourism’s impact on grizzly bears

With 40 infrared cameras deployed in Kitasoo-Xai’Xais territory, research will help develop tourism plan with least impact on bears

NDP wants Lower Mainland MLA removed from BC Liberal caucus for alleged homophobia

BC Liberal leader, some MLAs apologize for Christian magazine ads but Laurie Throness doubles down

B.C. health officials pleased with likely extension of Canada-U.S. border closure

Health Minister Adrian Dix says the situation is ‘very serious in the United States’

Children suffer swollen eyes, burns while playing at Lower Mainland spray park

Mission RCMP are investigating incident that injured several children

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Beloved Island woman dies at 106

Dorothy Adair adored by the many people she met in Chemainus in two short years

Most Read