Better pay on the way

Victoria’s councillors will now be paid up to $23,500 and mayors up to $75,000 following an across-the-board increase in allowances by more than 30 per cent.

The rise, recommended by the Local Government (Councillor Remuneration Review) Panel and accepted by the State Government, is the first pay rise for Victoria’s councillors in eight years.

It is part of a support package which includes:
• An increase in allowances of 30.46 per cent;
• The addition of the equivalent of the Superannuation Guarantee Contribution, which is currently 9 per cent;
• A minimum support toolkit of resources, including mobile phones and personal computers; and
• Reimbursement of costs including travel and child/family care.

Local Government Minister Richard Wynne says the new allowance and support package will better reflect the contribution being made by locally elected councilors and will encourage candidates to step forward for locally elected office.

"Local councils are a distinct and essential tier of government and local communities deserve good local government representation," Mr Wynne said.

"It is important that we continue to attract the best quality candidates to stand for local government. A more realistic councillor support package will help to remove barriers from potential candidates putting their hands up for the November 29 elections to local government."

Victorian councils are categorised according to population and revenue data.

"The new allowance package continues the existing three-category model of council allowances, based on revenue and population figures and ensures councils can retain flexibility and discretion to set allowances within a range in consultation with their community,” Mr Wynne says.

"The package will take effect after the elections for all 79 local councils … and is being announced now so councils can budget ahead."

Mr Wynne said the Brumby Government had endorsed the recommendations of the review panel, but modified one to ensure councils retained the flexibility to apply allowance adjustments anywhere within their category range.

The new allowances are based on State Government statutory and executive officer payments between 2000 and 2007.

The new rates will be:
• Category 1: $6500-$15,700 councillors, up to $47,000 mayors;
• Category 2: $8100-$19,600 councillors, up to $60,700 mayors; and
• Category 3: $9800-$23,500 councillors, up to $75,000 mayors.

In all categories there is also the addition of the equivalent of the Superannuation Guarantee (currently 9 per cent) where applicable under the new policy.

The allowance adjustment will also be applied to Melbourne City Council, which is administered separately to other Victorian councils under the City of Melbourne Act. The new allowances will be $143,500 for the mayor, $58,700 for the deputy mayor and $32,600 for councillors.



















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