OUR TEAM: Mayor Paul Pisasale at a full council meeting held at the Ipswich High School.
OUR TEAM: Mayor Paul Pisasale at a full council meeting held at the Ipswich High School. File

What our council is costing us annually

A PAY rise of 2.3% from July next year will take Ipswich City councillors to an annual pay of more than $126,000 including superannuation.

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale's pay package including superannuation will go to more than $210,000.

The pay rise, set by the independent Local Government Remuneration and Discipline Tribunal, is in line with CPI, unlike the 4.5% handed down last year.

In its decision to give a 4.5% increase last year, the tribunal cited the State Government's intention to give councils "greater autonomy and responsibility".

Under the new rates, Cr Pisasale will receive an extra $4223 to bring his annual pay to $187,853, Deputy Mayor Victor Attwood will receive an extra $2872, taking his pay to $127,740 and councillors will receive an extra $2534, taking their pay to $112,712.

Councillors also receive 12% superannuation in addition to the base salary and are entitled to claim a number of expenses (see table below).

The amount determined by the Tribunal places Ipswich councillors in the third highest pay rates along with Logan City Council and behind Gold Coast in the top band and Moreton Bay and Sunshine Coast regional councils.

Gold Coast Councillors will earn $139,011 with their Mayor Tom Tate on $232,938.

Moreton Bay councillors and Sunshine Coast councillors will earn $127,740 with mayors Allan Sutherland and Mark Jamieson on $210,396.

Brisbane City Council pay rates are determined separately. Lord Mayor Graham Quirk earns $243,507 a year, Opposition Leader Milton Dick $162,339 and councillors $147,580.

Meanwhile Lockyer Valley, Scenic Rim and Somerset regional councils are three bands below Ipswich with their councillors set to earn $63,870 and mayors Steve Jones, John Brent and Graeme Lehmann on $120,226.

Cr Paul Pisasale said councillors' pays were determined by an independent body.

"It's at arm's length, it's nothing that we voted for," Cr Pisasale said.

"I don't think there's any politician that ever goes into the job for money.

"People don't realise we don't get overtime, we don't get holiday pay and we don't even get holidays, we're on call 24/7.

"We don't get a pension, we don't get long service. Nobody minds that but every time there's a pay increase everybody starts talking about politicians' wages.

"From my point of view it's one of those decisions that someone makes independently.

"I'm glad it is taken away from councillors because at the end of the day I'm in there to do a job and I'll continue to do the job and if the people feel that they don't get value for money, they can replace me or the councillors."

"Every one of my councillors are working 24-7. They are all working very hard.

"It's about value for money.

"If you don't feel that the politician that you are paying for is giving you a return on investment, replace them."

 

Ipswich councillor expenses released

EXPENSES claimed for the past financial year for all councillors were released in Ipswich City Council's annual report yesterday.

During the 2013-2014 financial year, Council provided office space, other facilities and the cost of representing the city as follows:

  • Cr P Pisasale $85,768
  • Cr Morrison $85,576
  • Cr Tully $92,339
  • Cr Attwood $93,534
  • Cr Casos $74,354
  • Cr Morrow $71,602
  • Cr Bromage $84,175
  • Cr Antoniolli $26,147 (operates council-owned office)
  • Cr C Pisasale $97,509
  • Cr Ireland $78,561
  • Cr Pahlke $103,696
  • Councillors can claim expenses for: Council attendance, Professional development, Travel costs, Accommodation for approved council business, Daily travel allowance, Cab charge facility or reimbursement for public transport, Entertainment.
  • Facilities: Administrative tools and access to office amenities, Home office, Stationery, Maintenance costs of any council-owned equipment, Administrative support, Councillor uniform, Telecommunication needs, Legal costs and insurance cover, Vehicle, Fuel costs, Car parking, Advertising electorate offices, Taxation requirements for car expenses.

Are Ipswich City councillors worth $126,000 plus a year?

This poll ended on 19 December 2014.

Current Results

Yes

25%

No

74%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.


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