Wheel deal for CEO

Stirling Times - - Front Page - Laura Pond

THE City of Stir­ling has spent $80,000 on a car for its chief ex­ec­u­tive de­spite pre­vi­ous crit­i­cism for buy­ing a $65,000 Mercedes Benz.

Stu­art Jar­dine and then Stir­ling mayor Gio­vanni Ital­iano came un­der fire in 2015, in­clud­ing from for­mer premier Colin Bar­nett, for each driv­ing the lux­ury brand car.

Mayor Mark Ir­win opted to use his pri­vate ve­hi­cle when he took of­fice in Oc­to­ber 2017 and the City sold both cars early this year.

It re­placed Mr Jar­dine’s car as per his con­tract and bought an $80,000 Toy­ota Prado with add-ons, but did not com­ment on why the ve­hi­cle was cho­sen.

Un­der the chief ex­ec­u­tive’s con­tract, which was re­newed in 2016 for five years, his pri­vate use of the car had a nom­i­nal value of $15,000. A spokes­woman said this was cal­cu­lated on an “an­nual us­age fee rather than the pur­chase price”.

Mr Jar­dine is recog­nised as a ‘pre­served CEO’ un­der the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Salaries and Al­lowances Act, al­low­ing re­mu­ner­a­tion to be above what is pre­scribed be­cause he was ap­pointed be­fore Oc­to­ber 19, 2011.

His 2017-18 re­mu­ner­a­tion pack­age is $392,212, com­pris­ing $325,379 base salary, su­per­an­nu­a­tion and con­tri­bu­tion, car use value and pro­fes­sional mem­ber­ship fees, which cor­po­rate ser­vices di­rec­tor In­grid Hawkins said was com­pa­ra­ble to most metropoli­tan chief ex­ec­u­tives.

Un­der the Act, re­mu­ner­a­tion for chief ex­ec­u­tives of band one coun­cils – in­clud­ing Stir­ling, Wan­neroo, Joon­dalup and Bayswa­ter – is from $247,896 to $375,774.

Ms Hawkins said the ve­hi­cle met the Act re­quire­ments as it was part of the City’s fleet and not his per­sonal ve­hi­cle.

“To achieve best value for ratepay­ers, all ve­hi­cles across the City’s fleet are changed over ev­ery two years or at 40,000km,” she said.

“The CEO man­ages the largest coun­cil in WA and is re­mu­ner­ated ac­cord­ingly.”

Wan­neroo chief ex­ec­u­tive Daniel Simms’ re­mu­ner­a­tion is within the $360,000-$369,999 salary band, Joon­dalup’s Garry Hunt’s is at the band max­i­mum of $375,774 and Bayswa­ter chief ex­ec­u­tive An­drew Brien is on a $319,625 pack­age.

At the Oc­to­ber 16 Stir­ling Coun­cil meet­ing, coun­cil­lors voted 8-3 to ac­cept the chief ex­ec­u­tive’s 2017-18 per­for­mance re­view re­port.

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