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RFD- 3612 Business Items   Item #   10. c.    
Regular Council Meeting Agenda
Meeting Date: 06/24/2019  
Title:    2019 Council Remuneration Task Force - Report and Recommendations - Pungur-Buick
Department: Corporate Services  
Strategic Vision Element: This topic relates to all three of the City’s strategic vision elements contained in Council’s Strategic Plan Related Goal:

Information
Request for Decision Summary
As per the Council Remuneration Policy, the creation of a council remuneration review task force was struck to review Council remuneration for the 2021 to 2025 term as well as, for the existing term, the impact of the federal government's change to municipally elected officials taxable income and the consideration of the creation of a parental leave bylaw for Council. The Task Force has prepared a report with recommendations as a result of their review and it is being presented to Council for consideration and decision.
 

Proposed Motion
Proposed Motion 1:

That for the current term of Council,  a 10% increase be provided to the Mayor and Councillors’ base salaries effective January 1, 2019; and
 
that Administration be directed to bring forward a Parental Leave for Elected Officials Bylaw for Council’s review and approval. 
 
 
Proposed Motion 2:

That for the 2021 to 2025 term of Council, the base salary for a Councillor be set at 50% of the Mayor’s salary effective the first pay period of the term; and

that the Mayor’s base salary receive an annual increase that is equivalent to two times the City’s annual market rate adjustment and that this becomes effective for the first pay period of 2022; and

that the Council Remuneration Policy be revised to reflect that the Mayor only be eligible to claim honouraria outside City of Spruce Grove business hours which are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday and that this become effective for the first pay period of the term; and

that the Council Remuneration Policy be further revised to exclude internal board and committee meetings from being eligible for honouraria and that this become effective the first pay period of the term; and

that the rates for honouraria and related increases continue as stipulated in the Council Remuneration Policy; and

That the car allowance of $100 per month for the Mayor and $50 per month for Councillors increase to $120 per month and $60 per month respectively effective the first pay period of the term; and

That the following remain unchanged:

the benefit program offered to Council,
the travel and subsistence rates,
the monthly office and technology allowance of $100,
the one-time per term home office set-up allowance of $300 and
the issuance and support of technology and respective devices.
 
 
Proposed Motion 3:

That the 2019 Council Remuneration Review Task Force be thanked for their hard work and dedication to their community and the task force be dissolved.
Background/Analysis
A review of council remuneration takes place once per term as stipulated in the Council Remuneration Policy. Current practice is for Council to strike a resident task force at the mid-point of the Council term, provide a scope of work through a terms of reference and identify a member of administration to support the Task Force in their work. The Task Force determines, with support from administration, the most appropriate method by which to meet the requirements of the terms of reference and report recommendations to Council. This can include surveying other municipalities, reviewing relevant legislation, speaking with subject matter experts, and engaging stakeholders.
 
Council struck the 2019 Council Remuneration Review Task Force and approved their terms of reference at its regular meeting on November 13, 2018.
  
Council appointed Spruce Grove electors to the Task Force at its regular meeting on January 28, 2019.
 
The scope of the Task Force’s review was as follows:
 
For the 2021 to 2025 Council term
  • Mayor and Councillor Remuneration
  • Mayor and Councillor Honorarium and when they are applicable
  • Benefits provided to Mayor and Councillors
  • Allowances and other provisions such as technology, travel and subsistence
  • When it is appropriate to provide honouraria
For the current term of Council
  • Review the impact of the change to municipally elected official taxable income
  • Review the provision and implementation of parental leave benefits for Councillors
The Task Force recognized the importance of considering both the unique circumstances of the public office within Spruce Grove, and the review of compensation as it relates to municipal public office in a manner that reflects the duties, responsibilities, skill, effort, authority and decision making. To this end, the Task Force set up a series of interviews to obtain input from Council and allowed for additional meetings to deliberate their recommendations. The Task Force met nine times and between the six volunteer members, spent approximately 200 hours reviewing all aspects set forth in the terms of reference regarding council remuneration.
 
The key factors they used to guide their recommendations included:
 
  • the City’s current financial position and how municipal budgeting and financing works;
  • the current state of the economy, inflation, the Consumer Price Index and other factors influencing the economy of the region and the province;
  • the long-range financial outlook for the City including upcoming development and capital projects that will affect the financial position of the City to the end of 2021;
  • an analysis of the unprecedented growth the city is experiencing, and the long-range planning and growth outlook as well as how growth has recently shifted in the city;
  • a review of remuneration reports and compensation and benefit figures of 10 comparator municipalities within Alberta;
  • the growing complexity of political matters, regional influences, economic growth and participation within the capital region; and
  • public demand for increased transparency, public engagement and appearances by Council.
The Task Force presented its report and recommendations at Committee of the Whole on May 21, 2019 and it is now before Council for consideration and decision. Discussions that took place during the Committee of the Whole meeting have been captured in the Options Alternatives section of the RFD.

The proposed motions have been structured to address recommendations for the current term, recommendations for the next term, and the dissolution of the task force. Council may choose to approve, all, some, or none of the recommendations, as stated in the terms of reference. The report is presented in the form of advice and recommendations and is not binding on Council.
 
Options/Alternatives
The recommendations from the Task Force are as follows:
 
  1. Impact of Change to Municipally Elected Officials Taxable Income
 
Increase Council base salaries by 10% effective January 1, 2019
  1. Parental Leave Benefits for Councillors
 
Enact a Parental Leave for Elected Officials Bylaw
  1. Mayor and Councillor Remuneration 2021-2025 Term
 
Mayor Salary Annually increase by two times the City’s annual market rate adjustment
Councillor Salary Set to 50% of Mayor’s salary
  1. Mayor and Councillor Honourarium 2021-2025 Term
 
Mayor Honourarium Eligible only for work outside of City business hours (8:30am to 4:30pm)
Councillor Honourarium Remain unchanged
  1. Benefits 2021-2025 Term
 
The benefit program offered to Council remain unchanged.
  1. Allowances 2021-2025 Term
 
Travel and Subsistence Travel and Subsistence rates continue to be updated annually according to the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat and Revenue Canada suggested rates, as per Policy.
Technology Allowance The monthly office and technology allowance of $100 remain unchanged.
 
Home Office Set-up The one-time per term home office set-up allowance of $300 remain unchanged.
Issuance and Support of Technology The issuance and support of technology and respective devices remain unchanged.
 
Vehicle Allowance That the car allowance of $100 per month for the Mayor and $50 per month for Councillors increase to $120 per month and $60 per month respectively effective the first pay period of the 2021 to 2025 term of Council.
Other Recommendation for Consideration
 
Position Profiles for a Councillor and a Mayor Council consider directing administration to draft position profiles for a Councillor and a Mayor.


Below is follow-up on the discussion that took place during the Committee of the Whole Meeting on May 21, 2019:
 
Discussion Topic Options for Consideration
 The increasing demand being placed on individual Councillors with respect to their various board and committee duties and whether the existing budget for Councillor expenses was adequate as well as whether or not the current budget structure is appropriate. 
 
Finance has indicated that they are happy review the structure and adequacy of the Council expense budget and provide options to Committee of the Whole during the corporate plan deliberations in October.
There was discussion about various boards and committees and the disparity in demands placed on Councillors. The most evident was the Subdivision and Development Appeal Board. The City Clerk’s Office, as part of it new role to provide the Clerk services to that Board will be undertaking a review with board members and bringing forward recommendations to Council to address this issue prior to the next term for consideration.

The report from the Council Remuneration Task Force is presented in the form of advice and recommendations and is not binding on Council. Council may choose to approve, all, some, or none of the recommendations. 

Council may choose to add an additional motion regarding the position profile recommendation made by the Task Force. Such a motion could read:
 
That Administration be directed to draft position profiles for a Councillor and a Mayor and bring them to a future Committee of the Whole meeting for discussion.
Consultation/Engagement
The Task Force opted to interview each member of Council to discuss their unique activities and commitments and to gain an understanding of their viewpoints on the above matters.
 
The Task Force also worked with resources in the Human Resources Department to gather and review compensation and allowances from 10 comparator municipalities.  
Implementation/Communication
The report has been shared on the City's website as well as forming part of this Request for Decision.

Policy revisions would also be required along with administrative work to support the implementation of the recommendations should they be approved by Council. Specifically those would be:
 
  • Preparing a Parental Leave for Elected Officials bylaw, and
  • Revising the Council Remuneration Policy.
These documents would be prepared and presented to Council for review and approval prior to the next term with the exception of the Parental Leave for Elected Officials bylaw that has been drafted and will be ready to come forward this year.

Should Council wish to pursue position profiles, those documents will also need to be drafted and brought forward for discussion.

Council's direction will also be shared with administration to support implementation.  
Impacts
N/A

Fiscal Impact
Financial Implications:
 
The recommendations can be factored into the City’s corporate plans for the appropriate years and brought forward to Council for approval as part of the City’s corporate planning process.  The immediate impact of $32,000 for 2019 can be absorbed within the organizations’ overall budget.

Attachments
2019 Council Remuneration Review Report
Report Presentation

City Council and Committee of the Whole agendas and minutes are posted on the City of Spruce Grove website for information purposes only. These agendas may be changed at the discretion of Council by the addition or deletion of items. Anyone reviewing the draft agenda should do so on the understanding that it is subject to change by Council.

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Audio from the most recent City Council and Committee of the Whole meetings are available via podcast on the City of Spruce Grove website.



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