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EMPLOYMENT CONDITIONS AND VEHICLES STATEMENT

Public Notices

This statement has been prepared in response to social media conversations that have been brought to our attention by concerned community members.

A significant amount of misinformation is being spread within the community at the present time about employment conditions and the provision of motor vehicles to senior staff as part of their employment contracts.  For the sake of clarity on this issue, it should be understood that these vehicles already exist.  Ill-informed suggestions have been made that staff are to be provided with vehicles different to those which they currently have, those observations are simply untrue.

Motor vehicles are part of the attraction and retention benefit provided to senior employees in a number of sectors including Local Government.  Throughout local government across Australia, if a Council wants to recruit people with qualifications (tertiary degrees and post graduate qualifications) to senior positions, then generally it needs to offer an appropriate salary package.  With this industry-wide expectation, it could be very difficult for the Shire of Chittering to attract suitably qualified and experienced staff without offering attractive employment packages.  Traditionally, vehicles have been part of those arrangements and almost every local Government throughout Australia has similar arrangements in place. 

However, in order to examine the efficiency of our current operations, and to determine whether savings could be found in respect to vehicles and plant, the Shire’s Chief Executive Officer recommended that Council engage a fleet management consultant in August 2016 to review our fleet and vehicle arrangements.  That consultant is an industry expert and has assisted well over one hundred councils and State Government departments around Australia in managing their vehicle operations.  That work has been underway for the past twelve months and savings of $200,000 were identified in the first year. 

Recently, that consultant also recommended a more transparent approach to providing vehicles as part of a contract.  Accordingly, the consultant recommended that Council consider offering senior staff cash in lieu of a Council provided motor vehicle.  Councillors were briefed by the consultant on two separate occasions in April regarding this matter and the report which was presented at the Council Meeting on 17 May was based on the recommendations of that consultant. 

In the report, there was an incorrect reference to “luxury vehicles”.  A luxury vehicle is defined by the Australian Tax Office as a car with a purchase price over a certain threshold.  There are no Shire vehicles which can be classed as “luxury vehicles” and the vehicles which are provided to senior staff in Chittering as part of their employment contracts are not “luxury vehicles”. 

The item was held over for further workshopping and reconsideration by Council.  It should be noted again that the report did not recommend new or luxury vehicles for staff, but rather introduced further options for consideration by Council.  Factual and accurate information on matters such as these is best obtained directly from the Shire or from your Councillors, and would I encourage anyone with an interest on this or any other issue to approach us at any time should clarification be required.

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For further information please contact your Shire President or Councillors, whose individual contact details can be found on the Shire website (www.chittering.wa.gov.au/council/councillors.aspx).

Queries can also be addressed to Alan Sheridan, Chief Executive Officer via chatter@chittering.wa.gov.au or 9576 4600.  This media statement has no regulatory value.

Category: Public Notices