(a) In addition to the authority granted by Section 11-43-7.1, the council or other governing body of any Class 1 municipality may grant to the members of the council or governing body, an additional amount of money monthly for expenses incurred by the members when attending to the business of the municipality within its corporate limits. The maximum amount of the additional expense allowance shall be three hundred thirty-three dollars and thirty-three cents ($333.33) per month.
(b) Notwithstanding all other provisions of law, any council or governing body member may elect in writing to have the expense allowances authorized by subsection (a) of this section and Section 11-43-7.1, become subject to the withholding of any employee contribution required to be paid into the trust fund of any pension or retirement system in which the member is eligible to participate. A council or governing body member may also elect in writing, within 90 days of May 4, 1994, to pay into the pension or retirement system trust fund the required contribution on any expense allowances previously received by the member during all or any portion of the three-year period prior to the member's payment election, together with interest at the rate of eight percent per annum thereon computed from the date of receipt of the allowance to the date of payment. If either or both of the elections is made by a member of the governing body or council, the expense allowances on which employee contributions are paid into the retirement plan trust fund shall be considered together with all salaries received by the member, from which the required employee contribution was likewise withheld and paid into the retirement trust fund, to determine the base amount on which any retirement benefits or allowances to which the council or governing body member may be entitled shall be computed as provided under the retirement system.
(c) The provisions of this section shall not be construed to prevent any member of the council or governing body from being reimbursed for actual expenses incurred by the member in connection with any travel on municipal business beyond the corporate limits of the municipality, and the amount incurred shall not accrue against the monetary amounts provided in subsection (a) of this section, nor shall the reimbursement for the amount incurred be eligible for pension system withholding or be considered in determining pension or retirement benefits or allowances.