No raise for St. Catharines councillors

STC council

St. Catharines city councillors have voted against a raise.

The increase of roughly $7,000 would have gone into place following the upcoming election.

A staff report had recommended the increase and the addition of some insurance and health benefits.

Councillor Lori Littleton says the $25,368 dollars that councillors get is just not enough to get more people from more diverse backgrounds involved, "it's not fair to put that on people and expect them to basically volunteer their time to do what is quite frankly important and critical work."

The proposal would have seen salaries rise gradually over the next four years to $32,684.

That number is based on being 71.5% of the average income of residents in the city and would have put them in line with councillors in similar size cities across the province.

Councillor Carlos Garcia says the raise is not need as he does the job to help, "I don't accept the argument that increasing our salary will add to the people that are going to run, If you are going to run for councillor because of the money you make whether its 25-thousand or 32-thousand that is nothing compared to what you can make at a full time job."

In response, Councillor Greg Miller moved a motion to would have reduced councillors pay to $0, that was unanimously defeated.

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