Coun­cil­lors get payrise

Horowhenua Chronicle - - NEWS - By SADIE BECKMAN

Horowhenua’s coun­cil­lors will get a payrise af­ter rec­om­men­da­tions from the Re­mu­ner­a­tion Au­thor­ity.

Mayor Michael Feyen will re­ceive an in­crease of just over $6500, bump­ing his an­nual earn­ings up to $109,494 from $102,992.

Deputy mayor Wayne Bishop’s pay will go up to $39,105 from last year’s $36,516.

Other coun­cil­lors will earn $27,798, up from $25,957.

Fi­nance, au­dit and risk com­mit­tee in­de­pen­dent mem­ber Phillip Jones, and hear­ings com­mit­tee coun­cil­lor Jo Ma­son will both re­ceive in­creases, Ms Ma­son’s from $31,669 to $33,915, while Mr Jones, not an elected mem­ber, would re­ceive a ne­go­ti­ated amount, plus ex­penses that was around a third of that, coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive David Clap­per­ton said.

Coun­cil­lor Barry Judd, chair­man of the com­mu­nity well­be­ing com­mit­tee, will have an in­crease from $28,813 to $30,856, while com­mu­nity fund­ing and recog­ni­tion com­mit­tee chair and coun­cil­lor Neville Gimblett’s pay, will in­crease from $28,813 to $30,856.

The changes were protested at last week’s coun­cil meet­ing by coun­cil­lor Piri-Hira Tuka­pua, who said they should be frozen, how­ever coun­cil­lors can’t do that. She also claimed there was gen­der in­equal­ity in the ap­point­ment of com­mit­tee chairs. She told the mayor he had ap­pointed five male chairs on com­mit­tees, with the only fe­male be­ing Jo Ma­son.

Ms Tuka­pua said Mrs Ma­son had only got the role be­cause she was qual­i­fied with Re­source Man­age­ment Act stan­dards. She also said the mayor had been “miss­ing in ac­tion” too fre­quently.

“I want to freeze the re­mu­ner­a­tion so you don’t get another $6000 and I’m happy to keep my $25,000 or what­ever it is,” she said.

Mr Feyen said he dis­agreed with state­ments about him miss­ing in ac­tion.

“I would ar­gue against lots of that,” he said to Ms Tuka­pua. “I’d like to re­mind you that the only time you’ve ever come to me to have a chat is when you want to go on some sort of course, and I’ve ap­proved ev­ery sin­gle one.”

Deputy mayor Wayne Bishop queried what hap­pened about pay when the mayor sought a leave of ab­sence.

Mr Clap­per­ton said there was no spe­cific pol­icy around pay­ing mem­bers when they sought a leave of ab­sence.

Mr Feyen con­firmed he con­sid­ered the may­oral role as full time, and said his other role on the Dis­trict Health Board did not in­ter­fere with it.

“There’s been some cross overs but I think that they in­ter­link pretty well,” he said.

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