Council rejects pay freeze

FIVE rebel councillors fell just short of imposing a 12-month pay freeze on their colleagues last night.

Voices were raised across the table as the members of Rockhampton Regional Council split six to five on the vexed issue of whether to accept a 3% increase in basic pay as recommended by the state government’s remuneration tribunal.

When Cr Tony Williams proposed that his salary should be frozen until January 2011 – along with those of the mayor, deputy mayor and other councillors – he sparked a fierce debate.

“Now is not the time to accept an increase,” he said.

His pay freeze proposal was seconded by Cr Bill Ludwig who argued the community was hurting because of higher than previously experienced rates increases. But their stand brought rebukes from union stalwarts Stephen Schwarten and Brett Svendsen.

Read more about the pay debate in today's edition of The Morning Bulletin.



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