A raise of 12% may be in the works for Town of Creston Councilors.

One-third of Council’s salary used to be tax-free.

Not anymore.

Both the Director of Finance & Corporate Services Steffan Klassen and Chief Administrative Officer Michael Moore explained that a 12% raise would only make whole the take-home pay for councilors compared to last year’s pay due to the policy change.

“100% of our remuneration is going to taxable,” Councilor Jen Comer Explains. “So for some of us, especially those of us who are working, it’s going to push us into a higher tax bracket. Therefore, take-home pay is even less this year than it has been in past years.”

Councilors are currently being paid on average, $13,500 a year. Comer worked out how the pay translates in a dollar-per-hour figure based off her own hours.

“Because we’re paid a stipend, it isn’t based off the hours that we work. But I’ve been tracking my hours with Council and it works out to making about $16.60 an hour after all of the reading, all the meeting times, so it is definitely a labour of love.”

Council will convene to discuss what a fair raise will look like for the official 2019 budget, taking into account the CPI Index and potential added duties and responsibilities.

Some councilors noted the added labour of dealing with angry messages on social media and in public places as well.