Debate over cutting councillor raises was called “political posturing” and “immature” last night.

Councillors were discussing ways they can scale back or donate their 1.62 per cent raise at a time when the municipality is facing cuts to meet the budget. The mayor sent back his 4.04 per cent raise weeks ago.

The formula for raises was set up by a residents’ committee in 2004 and council voted last night to strike up another committee to figure out a new plan for raises. A report will be presented to council by September 2011.

Council also voted in favour of making sure raises for this year aren’t higher than the Nova Scotia Consumer Price Index, which Coun. Jerry Blumenthal pointed out was 1.8 per cent and higher than their scheduled raise.

Coun. Sue Uteck’s motion suggesting councillors could individually cut back their salaries was voted down.

“It may be an honourable gesture, but it opens some questions if your position was left vacant,” said Coun. Debbie Hum.

Several councillors argued it could turn into a political fight over who could do the job for cheaper.

“If you don’t want to keep it, donate it,” said Coun. David Hendsbee. “This is getting tiring, pathetic and immature.”

Coun. Bill Kardsten said it’s not about what he gets paid but there is a certain segment of the population who are offended by any public servants getting money.

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