City denies CEO paid more than Premier

Kim Oliver (MCC business support officer) and union representative Andrea Ballantyne. Picture: Jon Hewson www.communitypix.com.au d414973
Kim Oliver (MCC business support officer) and union representative Andrea Ballantyne. Picture: Jon Hewson www.communitypix.com.au d414973

The claims were made by union representative Andrea Ballantyne at a meeting of members of the Local Government Racing Cemeteries and Employees Union last week to put forward a proposal for a 3.85 per cent annual pay increase.

She claimed the council had cried poor and been unable to meet a requested pay rise for its lowest-paid workers.

A council spokeswoman said the City remained in a strong financial position although revenue streams had not grown in recent years.

‘The City recognises the tough economic times locally and Australiawide and needs to recognise restraint,” she said.

‘As wages are a large element of its cost base, restraint in that area is also needed.’

She said the Salaries and Allowances Tribunal set salaries for council chief executives and MPs including the Premier.

Four different bands determine the salary package paid to each council’s chief executive.

The City of Mandurah is in band one, which is between $244,232 and $359,436.

Premier Barnett’s total remuneration package is $344,840.

‘Mandurah’s chief executive is paid in the middle of the range of band one, noting that this is the complete package including superannuation and other benefits and the numbers quoted for the Premier are salary only,” the council spokeswoman said.

Ms Ballantyne told the meeting the union was arguing for a pay increase of about 4 per cent in line with a recommendation from the WA Council of Social Service’s 2013 Cost of Living Report.

‘At a meeting with council in mid-January we were initially offered a 2.2 per cent per annum increase and at a smaller meeting recently the offer was re-negotiated to 2.75 per cent per annum.’ Ms Ballantyne said.

‘We aren’t happy because that offer doesn’t even cover CPI (consumer price index) and they are claiming dire poverty and a bigger increase is not possible.’

She said they hoped to have a resolution by April 4.