South Peace News
Financial documents reveal that High Prairie town councillors claimed $4,378 less the last two years compared to Big Lakes County councillors, who increased their claims $143,101 during the same period.
The numbers in recently released consolidated financial statements from the town and county show a stark contrast in trends in how councillors are spending their respective taxpayers’ money.
The seven High Prairie councillors claimed $78,942 in 2018 which was $8,850 less than in 2017 when the figure was $87,792. It represents a 10.08 per cent decrease.
Meanwhile, the nine county councillors’ claims increased 12.36 per cent, up $46,300 to $421,025 from $374,725 in the same time period.
Over the two years from 2016-18, town claims dropped $4,378 [or 5.25 per cent] while the county’s increased $143,101 [an increase of 51.49 per cent].
Councillor Debbie Rose tops the town’s claims list in 2018 with $16,982 but it was a decrease of $6,300 from 2017’s total of $23,282 which also ranked her highest.
Former mayor Linda Cox was second highest in 2017 with claims of $17,596 but only served until the end of October. Pro-rated, Cox’s claims would still be second highest compared to Rose’s.
In 2018, Councillor Arlen Quartly claimed only $4,200 from the town while fellow Councillor Michael Long was second lowest with $7,182.
Rose’s high claims for the town in 2017-18 totalled $40,264 where Big Lakes County Councillor Ken Matthews’ claims in the same time period were over three times higher at $129,750.
South Peace News will present a more detailed report of town councillors claims and comparison with the county’s in next week’s edition.