North Vancouver school trustees have voted themselves a 2.4 per cent raise.
The vote to increase their annual stipends, retroactive to July 1, passed at the board’s first public meeting Sept. 22.
The increase means the chair of the board of education will now earn $30,413 per year – a pay raise of $713. The vice-chair will make $28,877 – $677 more than before. Other trustees will make $28, 058 – an increase of $658 a year.
The raises reflect a similar increase in the Vancouver consumer price index.
Trustee Cyndi Gerlach voted against the increase. “I’m not in favour of an increase to the stipend at this time,” she said. “I just don’t think it’s an appropriate time during a pandemic.”
Other trustees said it made more sense to increase their pay by a small amount on a regular basis than to keep delaying the decision, and then have to vote for a larger increase in the future.
Gerlach said even though the raise is a small amount “It’s $600 times seven people times multiple years out,” she said.
“We don’t have to give ourselves an increase at all.”
Other trustees didn’t agree and the raises were passed. The raises will result in an annual budget increase of $4,680.
Trustees rejected another option that would have increased their pay by 4.8 per cent.