Council CEO's pay rise put on hold

Waimate councillors have put the brakes on the chief executive's proposed pay rise.

At yesterday's district council meeting, human resources manager Fiona Hester-Smith recommended chief executive Tony Alden's salary be increased 2 per cent, backdated to August 2, 2013.

The council's chief executive review committee completed an annual review of Mr Alden's salary in September.

A proposal to lift his annual salary of $146,302 to $149,228, was presented at yesterday's council meeting, but councillors voted to table the item pending a performance review report.

Initially, Mayor Craig Rowley said he was happy to move the recommendation and was seconded by deputy mayor Sharyn Cain.

Newly elected councillor Peter Collins questioned the recommendation, saying he would look positively on a decision by Mr Alden to not accept a pay increase after what had transpired over the past couple of years.

Mr Alden has been at the centre of a long-standing building-consent dispute, with the council having to pay almost $150,000 in legal costs to Waimate businessman Keith Williams.

Newly elected councillor Tom O'Connor said he was not in a position to comment on Mr Alden's performance as he had not read the performance review. He asked that it be tabled.

Cr Cain said Mr Alden had not received a pay increase every year and she would not have an issue with a review.

Cr O'Connor proposed the matter be tabled pending a performance review report.

It was seconded by newly elected councillor Miriam Morton and the motion was carried.

The Timaru Herald