(PQB News photo)

(PQB News photo)

Qualicum Beach councillor says hiring of more staff to be done during budget deliberations

CAO’s ability to hire employees not going to be impeded

Qualicum Beach Coun. Teunis Westbroek says increasing the the town’s number of staff should be done during budget planning.

Westbroek, earlier in October, made a notice of motion not to increase the number of staff from the town’s current complement unless approved by council. But he amended it at council meeting on Oct. 27, after he sought the advice from former RDN chair Joe Stanhope and former acting CAO Dennis Trudeau.

Westbroek said the hiring of additional staff to its current core of workers should be applied strictly during the town’s budget financial planning review processes.

“Because every staff member whether it was union and non-union would probably result in about a $80,000 to a $100,000 cost, so that would have to be in the budget,” said Westbroek. “If the manager was successful in convincing the board that we have to increase staff in whatever department, then the budget would be adjusted accordingly.”

READ MORE: Nine Qualicum Beach town employees earned more than $100K in 2020

Mayor Brian Wiese indicated this does not limit the CAO’s ability to employ staff. He pointed out the town has vacancies due to staff leaving and were never replaced but they’ve already been budgeted for.

“The CAO can hire and terminate at will those spots,” Wiese explained. “But if he wants to hire additional staff outside the budget, he’s got to come to council.”

Coun. Scott Harrison pointed out the motion was not necessary because they already discuss staffing during budget deliberations.

Wiese said he understood Westbroek’s amendment to his motion.

“For me it clarifies the situation that we’re not actually interfering with the CAO’s role which is very important,” said Wiese.

The motion passed with Harrison opposed.

Michael.Briones@pqbnews.com

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