Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Hypocrisy "R" Us

According to cash strapped TransLink, senior executives are eligible for bonuses of 15-20 % as part of the company's incentives plan.

Transportation Minister Blair Lekstrom is outraged, sort of. He thinks a public organization struggling to fill funding gaps should not be paying bonuses although he conveniently forgets which level of government established TransLink and rules by which it governs.

Premier Photo Op added her voice, saying TransLink executives "don’t need more money than they're making already."

It remains to be seen if this attitude will be applied to other government departments and agencies. For example, despite massive losses and capital cost overruns, PavCo's Warren Buckley took home $325,000 in bonuses during fiscals years 2009 through 2011. That was in addition to $1.4 million in other compensation. PavCo's convention centre GM Ken Cretney also grabbed $100,000 bonuses in each of the fiscal years 2010 and 2011.

One of the more interesting examples of British Columbia's generosity toward the executive class is treatment of Ron Drolet, former VP of BC Transit. According to the agency's statement of executive compensation for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2010, Drolet retired April 1, 2009. For that one day of service, he was paid $290,083.

Mr. Drolet was retiring after 30 years service and he was entitled to the enhanced pension enjoyed by senior public servants, a much more lucrative plan than the retirement benefits provided regular staff. In addition to leaving with a sweet pension, the BC Transit VP took away a "cessation of employment" reward of almost a quarter of a million dollars.


My question again is, "If austerity is needed, why does it not apply to everyone."

The answer is that decision makers stack the deck in their own favour by ensuring that pay is decoupled from performance. Executive compensation has risen dramatically during the past several years, even when organizations have suffered operating losses and degraded asset values. Compensation consultants are often associated with extravagant increases enjoyed by executives. Not coincidentally, the very people employing the outsiders are the people gaining rewards determined by the consultants.

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3 comments:

  1. http://thetyee.ca/News/2009/11/07/BloatedFerries/

    Bc ferry top salaries

    ReplyDelete
  2. hi the whole of BC should be audited hydro,ferry translink etc

    ReplyDelete
  3. BC the highest poverty rate BC the highest corprate compensation rate?

    ReplyDelete

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