The Senior Democratic Services Officer presented the report which advised Members of the draft Annual Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales in respect of the level and range of remuneration the Authority must make available to its Members for the 2019/20 municipal year.
He outlined g the salary increases for Members on Basic Salary, Senior Salary and Civic Salary respectively.
He advised that the Basic Salary is currently £13,600 and the IRP proposed to increase this by 1.97%, to £13,868. Ge stated that the Council is entitled to pay 18 senior salaries but has determined to pay 15 senior salaries.
The IRP have proposed an increase for Leaders and members of the Executive due to the significant level of responsibility required. The present and proposed Senior Salaries are listed below.
The IRP propose that the current 3 bands for the payment of Civic Salaries be removed and payments will be on one band and the increase for the Mayor and Deputy Mayor would be £22,568 and £17,568 respectively.
The Panel has determined that in relation to Support for Members each authority, through its Democratic Services Committee, must ensure that all its elected members are given as much support as is necessary to enable them to fulfil their duties effectively. All elected members should be provided with adequate telephone, email and internet facilities giving electronic access to appropriate information.
Such support should be without cost to the individual member. Deductions must not be made from members’ salaries by the respective authority as a contribution towards the cost of support which the authority has decided necessary for the effectiveness and or efficiency of members.
The Panel has determined in relation to Co-opted Members that each authority, through its Democratic Services committee or other appropriate committee, must ensure that all voting co-opted members are given as much support as is necessary to enable them to fulfil their duties effectively. Such support should be without cost to the individual member.
There have been no changes to Travel and Subsistence, Local Government Pension Scheme or Family Absence.
The Senior Democratic Services Officer informed the Committee that he and the Chair had earlier that day attended a consultation meeting with the IRP in Swansea. The Senior Democratic Services Officer requested comments from the Committee on the proposals made by the IRP. The Committee considered that it needed to consider the perception of the public and the declining spiral of budgets when taking salary increases.
The Committee requested that it be provided with details of the overall increase in Members’ salaries including Senior Salary holders.
RESOLVED: That the Democratic Services Committee:
(1) noted the contents of the report and considered the recommendations.
write to the IRP whilst endorsing the determinations it would make, the IRP needs to bear in mind the budgetary pressures faced by local authorities when setting salary levels as each Council across Wales have very difficult budgetary decisions to make. The Committee endorses the independence of the IRP but urges restraint in the conclusions it makes in determining pay awards as the Council needs to demonstrate to the public that it is mindful of budgetary constraints in the delivery of public services.