Kent mayor and council to decide on compensation

Increase to council's remuneration will bring them in line with other communities

Kent council will decide on a change to their remuneration tonight, acting on a suggestion by their Chief Administrative Officer Wallace Mah.

The amount the District of Kent, which includes Agassiz, pays to its four councillors and mayor is “falling substantially behind” what comparative communities are paying for their elected officials, a report to council states.

“In no means is this proposed average increase significant as inflation has gone up over the years and the Council Indemnity has fallen behind.”

Currently, the District’s mayor position pays $19,534  and a council seat pays $10,655. The deputy mayor position, which pays an additional $2,930, is not under review. Mah’s report provides 13 similar sized communities, ranging from populations of 1,573 (Harrison) to 6,185 (Hope).

In Harrison Hot Springs, which has just over a quarter of the population of Kent, the mayor’s renumeration is $30,000 and each council member receives $15,000.

The average remuneration works out to $24,419 for mayor and $12,111, the amounts that Mah will put forward at tonight’s council meeting at Kent Municipal Hall.

The report suggest council goes ahead with the increase. The alternative will be to remain as status quo and let future councils address the remuneration, or to adjust remuneration according to the rate of inflation, at 2.9 per cent.