COMMISSIONERS filling in for suspended Perth councillors will take home more than $300,000 a year—10 times a councillor’s salary.
The fee for commissioners are set by local government minister David Templeman. Chair commissioner Eric Lumsden will be paid $320,000 and his deputy Gaye McMath and commissioner Andrew Hammond will get $310,000 each. They will also receive 14.5 per cent superannuation.
A council agenda notes it will need to find an extra $358,000 to cover the commissioners’ pay packets despite having saved $814,000 by stripping councillors of their wages while suspended, and reducing lord mayor Lisa Scaffidi’s salary to the minimum rate.
The city could also have to pay for the year-long state government inquiry into its affairs, which is estimated to cost $2.4 million.
If there is an adverse finding against Perth council, a councillor or an employee, the local government minister can order the city to pay some or all of the costs. The agenda included advice from staff to the commissioners to put some money aside to cover potential costs.
by DAVID BELL