Councillor's travel allowance goes to charity
Editor: Much has been said about a proposed travel allowance benefit given to the mayor and council at the Township of Langley over the last few weeks. I admit it right off the top, it is indeed a benefit, fully taxable and part of one’s gross income.
But I will be donating it in its entirety to charities — my church, service clubs, the cancer society, the heart fund, fibromyalgia groups, Rotary clubs, hockey and gymnastics organizations, among countless other groups.
I also include some raffle tickets I just bought from some group, and I don’t even know who they are. All I know they are from some school in Langley, but I’m not sure which one.
And believe it or not, I’m sure most of my colleagues will be doing the same. In fact our mayor, Jack Froese, was presented the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for philanthropy and service work throughout the community. His family supports many needy groups and organizations.
So, at this time of year, I challenge everyone to help wherever you can. If you’re already doing so, many thanks to you, because your efforts are appreciated. There are many local Langley charities that are always looking for support like the Langley Christmas Bureau, various churches, the Langley Food Bank, Aldergrove Food Bank, Meals on Wheels and my favourite, the Salvation Army Gateway of Hope.
If you don’t have much money, you can donate your time, they are always looking for people to help with the Kettle Drive at the Salvation Army. If you can’t get out, you can use your phone or send flyers around your neighbourhood to collect food and clothing.
When it comes to supporting the less fortunate in this community, there is always something that you can do and it doesn’t have to be at Christmas time.
When it comes to me and this so-called travel expense, I will be donating all of it and then some to charity!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone in the Langleys.
Councillor Steve Ferguson,
Editor’s note — According to Canada Revenue Agency, members of local councils do not pay tax on one-third of their salaries and expense allowances, in order to cover their travel and other expenses.