No changes at Paintearth organization meeting

George Glazier read the oath of office following a 4 – 3 vote for reeve at the County of Paintearth organization meeting on Tues. Oct. 18. ECA Review/J. Webster

County of Paintearth council maintained everything pretty much status quo at their organization meeting on Tues. Oct. 18 despite the desire of some councillors wanting to change up their committee responsibilities.
Nine committees out of 63 came down to a vote.  Rocky Dahmer put his name forward on five committees and Doreen Blumhagen for three.
A 4 – 3 vote left all committee appointments the same as the 2014-15 year.
Both Dahmer and Blumhagen spoke for equal representation on the PEPS committee as the west end of the County was not represented.
“Halkirk is going through a lot of changes,” said Dahmer.  “I’d certainly like to get back on and try and get it [changes] moving.”
George Glazier, Diane Elliott and Brian Bunbury remained their reps following a tie breaker vote between Bunbury, Blumhagen and Dahmer.
In a 4 – 3 vote, George Glazier assumed the position of reeve again, defeating Rocky Dahmer. In another 4 – 3 vote for deputy reeve, Diane Elliott remained in her seat over Walter Weber.
Council motioned to leave the decision of where to count the ballots up to administration following a request by a resident in attendance to count them in front of everyone rather than going behind closed doors and only announcing the winner.
Coun. Tyrrlll Hewitt questioned whether the ‘secret’ in secret balloting would be compromised but was assured that no one would be able to see who did the actual voting, only the name of the vote getter as the ballots were read out loud.
Forced to make a decision by motion of council, Brenda Hepp agreed that for transparency purposes the ballots would be counted in council chambers out loud.
A motion by Coun. Blumhagen passed unanimously to post councillor time sheets on the county website each month “so it gives ratepayers a better idea of what we do.”
Coun. Dahmer at the same time raised the inequity between councillor wages where two councillors receive 40 per cent of the wages, three are average, and two councillors get only 10 per cent.
“It is quite a discrepancy,” said Dahmer.
The discrepancy lies in those councillors with the most wages sitting on committees that actively meet a lot more often compared to other committees that seldom, if ever, meet.
In the 2015 Financials Statements, Reeve Glazier’s wages totalled $36,633; Coun. Elliott $26,959; Coun. Hewitt $22,874; Coun. Weber $22,792; Coun. Dahmer $20,076; Coun. Blumhagen $19,491; and Coun. Bunbury $19,082.

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