Nice work if you can get it

Dozens of municipal chief administrative officers in B.C. earn more than the White House chief of staff.

Dozens of municipal chief administrative officers in B.C. earn more than the White House chief of staff, notes IntegrityBC’s executive director Dermod Travis.

Jack Lew’s $172,200 salary last year was less than CAOs (city managers) in Richmond, Delta, North Vancouver (City and District), Kelowna, Maple Ridge, West Vancouver, Burnaby, Kamloops, Langley City, Pitt Meadows, White Rock, Surrey, Vancouver and Victoria.

Penny Ballem in Vancouver earned $324,110 last year to top them all, and it gets worse for taxpayers. Among 30 cities covered by the Vancouver Sun’s public sector salaries database, 116 municipal employees in B.C. earned more than Lew.

Some small-town B.C. bureaucrats are making hefty salaries, too. Lillooet’s CAO is paid $120,316 annually to watch over 2,322 residents, which translates to $110 apiece for only one municipal employee.

An article last year by Record reporter Scott Stanfield found that in 2010, 45 employees of the City of Courtenay, Town of Comox, Village of Cumberland and Comox Valley Regional District earned more than $75,000 each. Twelve exceeded the six-figure mark, led by Courtenay administrator Sandy Gray, who made $175,112, plus expenses.

We don’t question their qualifications or their hard work and we aren’t ready to swing the pendulum as far as Comox Valley Common Sense would like.

However, considering the Canadian Federation of Independent Business says municipal spending in B.C. has risen to “nearly four times the rate of population growth over the last decade,” even after adjusting for inflation, Common Sense’s push for civic fiscal responsibility is easy to understand.

As such, Victoria might be onto something with its proposal to create an auditor general for local government.

By law, local governments must balance their budget. If they do it just by raking more taxes from us rather than making prudent decisions, maybe they need some oversight.

editor@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Shelter Point Distillery won several Canadian Whisky Awards this year, including a gold for best single malt. Facebook photo
Vancouver Island’s Shelter Point Distillery wins gold for single malt

Business won nine medals at recent Canadian Whisky Awards virtual ceremony

Comox Valley-raised Shay Sandiford has earned a spot on the Canada skateboard team. Facebook
Courtenay skateboarder selected to first-ever national team

A young man from Courtenay is among 12 athletes who have been… Continue reading

A WestJet flight on the runway leaving Comox. Photo by Erin Haluschak
Aviation company seeks contracted employees to fill former WestJet roles at YQQ

Menzies Aviation from Edinburgh Park, Scotland, operates in 34 countries across the world

A cougar was spotted Monday near Queneesh Elementary. (WildSafe BC photo)
Cougar sighted Monday near Courtenay school

Conservation officers are warning the public to avoid the wooded areas around… Continue reading

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Nanaimo RCMP are looking for a suspect who smashed the window of an adult toy store and made off with more than $1,200 in merchandise. (File photo)
Vancouver Island sex shop out $1,200 in merchandise after suspect steals ‘colossal’ product

Suspect smashed window of Nanaimo store, cutting himself in the process

Riverside Calvary Church in Walnut Grove. (Langley Advance Times file)
B.C. is ‘stereotyping’ churches as riskier for COVID than other spaces, lawyer argues

Judge said that freedom of expression, religion are not at issue in the case

B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell gets acquainted with Tsawwassen First Nation Chief Kim Baird’s 10-month-old daughter Sophia, husband Steve and four-year-old Amy at the B.C. legislature before a ceremony to endorse the Tsawwassen Treaty, Oct. 15, 2007. (Sharon Tiffin/Black Press)
Indigenous consent comes first and last for B.C. industrial projects

Environment minister can still approve permits without consent

B.C.’s court of appeal in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Kootenay man appeals 7-year conviction for New Year’s Eve kidnapping, beating

Brandon Coons, 27, was convicted on five charges, including assault with a weapon

Nootka Sound RCMP responded to a workplace fatality report south of Gold River on Monday morning. (Campbell River Mirror photo)
One dead in workplace accident at Gold River logging site

The RCMP and Work Safe BC are investigating the incident at Western Forest Product’s TFL 19

Ladysmith’s famous Festival of Lights decorations are still up as of March 1, 2021. (Cole Schisler photo)
PHOTOS: It’s still looking a lot like Christmas in Ladysmith

Festival of Lights volunteers cannot remove the holiday roof top displays due to COVID-19

An investigation is underway after two VPD officers were recorded posing for pictures near a dead body at Third Beach on Feb. 24. (Screen grab/Zachary Ratcliff)
Vancouver officers placed on desk duty after filmed posing next to dead body

Pair put in ‘non-deployable, admin positions’ as the investigation into their conduct continues

Most Read