Shoalhaven Councillors unanimously vote for pay rise

Shoalhaven City Councillors
Shoalhaven City Councillors

Last night Shoalhaven Councillors awarded themselves a pay rise for the next financial year, despite resistance from local residents.

A Fairfax Media poll revealed 82 per cent of readers think councillors do not deserve the recommended pay rise of 2.5 per cent.

The Local Government Remuneration Tribunal has allowed a 2.5 per cent increase, raising the maximum yearly regional-rural councillor’s fee from $19,310 to $19,790, and mayoral fee from $42,120 to $43,170.

The recommendation to increase pay was unanimously supported by councillors at council’s strategy and assets committee meeting.

Meanwhile, if Shoalhaven City Council’s general manager Russ Pigg meets his Key Performance Indicators, he will pocket a bonus on top of his handsome yearly earnings of $324,333.

This figure includes salary, fringe benefits, vehicle and other on-costs.

Shoalhaven Council has not yet responded to questions about the general manager’s bonus.

It is understood it could amount to between zero and five per cent of his earnings, from $0-$16,216. 

Council’s four directors earn a combined sum of $977,223 per year.

So on average, directors Paul Keech (Assets and Works), Carmel Krogh (Shoalhaven Water), Stephen Dunshea (Finance, Corporate and Community Services) and Phil Costello (Planning, Environment and Development) earn $244,206 each.

Council’s staffing costs increased by five to six per cent from 2016-2017 to 2017-2018.

This is due to the public sector’s default increase of 2.5 per cent, and step increases – with seniority, workers pay increases.