Time to rewrite executive contracts in B.C.

Bonuses, lavish pension schemes unnecessary, reader writes

The provincial government recently announced that 384 public sector and Crown corporation senior executives each received an average bonus payment of $48,784.

Consider and compare this generous bonus to the average annual salary for a Canadian worker, which is only $46,000.

For comparison purposes, other national average salaries included retail workers at $27,113, professionals at $63,941, specialist physicians at $350,000, judges at $260,000 and our prime minister, who survives on $315,000 a year.

Why must we pay our executives so much more money than these national figures? Presently the province of B.C. is paying $68.2 million just for compensation for executives.

It seems the B.C. Liberal Party’s austerity program has hit a brick wall. Former finance minister Kevin Falcon announced a freeze on executive compensation and other measures to control costs. They didn’t work.

Now Finance Minister Mike DeJong has indicated that a lot of “pushing, pulling and prodding” is needed to rein in the excessive salary costs. He also claims to be constrained, to a certain degree, by existing contracts now in place.

Here is one simple way to remedy this problem.

Firstly, honour all executive existing contracts, something we know the B.C. Liberal government is good at.

Secondly, from this point forward ensure that all future executive contracts are rewritten and restructured so as to cut back on the lavish pension schemes and excessive severance packages and establish base salaries which will reflect the salaries in the real world.

When a new executive position becomes available, you can be assured that hoards of qualified applicants would apply and be extremely pleased just to get the base salary for these cushy and lucrative positions.

Martin Battle

Victoria