When Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan heard about the TransLink executives taking a bigger slice of its $1.3 billion budget in raises, he wasn't surprised - but he wasn't happy, either.
The transportation authority recently released its 2012 salary disclosure documents, and the number of staff members making more than $100,000 grew by 14.6 per cent.
"They're supposed to be on an austerity campaign and prove they're doing what they're supposed to be doing, and yet here (they) are spending inordinate amounts of money in order to increase wages for themselves," Corrigan said.
The four top executives all received pay raises last year, despite such dire economic times for TransLink that the province is having a public referendum to determine how to fund the authority moving forward.
CEO Ian Jarvis went from $382,954 in 2011 to $394,730 in 2012 (with pension contributions and benefits, the total is $438,700); COO Doug Kelsey went from $329,936 to $336,729; CFO Cathy McLay went from $285,481 to $294,877; and executive VP Bob Paddon went from $244,699 to $273,889.
"Having worked with these people, they're not worth it," Corrigan said. "They must think they have died and gone to heaven. It's unbelievable someone is paying this amount of money and most of them would work for half of that."
The costs for staff making less than $75,000 a year was consistent with the year before, costing a total of $15.4 million.
But the staffing costs for those making more than $75,000 a year increased by 18 per cent, from $33.5 to "I don't get it," he said. "It's this board of directors. There's no perspective and no accountability - and the reality is until there is a demand, an allowed demand, from the public to stop this, things aren't going to change."
The Canadian Taxpayers Federation also publicly denounced TransLink's pay raises, and said "their leadership has completely lost touch with the people they are supposed to be serving."
"This is the management team that claims they cannot operate the present system on 'only' $1.3 billion a year in taxes, fares and tolls," said Jordan Bateman, the federation's B.C. director, in a media release. "It's pretty rich that these individuals are lecturing us that more of our hard-earned money is needed to keep the system afloat."
To see TransLink's 2012 salary report, visit ow.ly/ohLof.
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