Alberton Town Council decided during its May monthly meeting to leave its councilor remuneration bylaw as is until a new council is elected.
Like other municipalities across the province, Alberton Town Council is partway through a process of adopting new bylaws that reflect the new Municipal Government Act. The wording of many of the new bylaws follows a provincial template.
The town’s finance committee chair, David Cahill and fellow councilor Alan Curtis took issue with changing the remuneration bylaw near the end of the current term, arguing it’s the new council that will be elected in November that should be dealing with that.
Cahill initially questioned how the bylaw might affect councilors who miss meetings due to illness or work commitments.
Curtis suggested a policy that does not take into consideration such realities could make it difficult for a municipality to attract new councilors and might even be discriminatory. “Otherwise, you’re going to end up with a council comprised of old retired guys, like me,” he said.
All councilors subsequently agreed with Cahill and Curtis that passing of the remuneration bylaw should be left to the new council and they unanimously passed a motion to stick with the current bylaw and to continue discussions with the provincial government on the matter.
Curtis recommended council explain to the provincial government why it did not pass a new bylaw.
“We’re not just turning it down because we feel like it; we’re doing it with just cause, I think.”
Questioned about the motion following the monthly meeting, Curtis suggested council should not be tightly tied to a provincial template. “We are elected by the people of Alberton,” he pointed out.