WATCH: Wage hikes are being recommended for CRD senior managers making more than $100,000 a year as well as a 14 per cent pay raise for politicians. Tess van Straaten reports.
The highest paid workers at the Capital Regional District could soon be paid even more.
Pay raises are being recommended for top staff as well as the local mayors and councillors who sit on the CRD board.
The proposed pay raises for senior managers ? which range between zero and six per cent ? were determined after a review by consultant Dillon Case and Associates.
The average increase is 2.67 per cent, adding more than $280,000 to the CRD budget, and on top of a cost-of-living increase.
The exempt senior managers affected currently make between $107,700 and $268,200 a year.
The proposed raises are in line with CRD policy, which mandates senior staff are paid the mid-range salary rate of 11 other B.C. municipalities. The report says the “current lag in annual wage adjustments for exempt staff is beginning to have implications on the recruitment and retention? of senior staff.
The extra increase would apply to 84 managers. Two others, the CRD’s chief financial officer and the corporate officer, are already above median wages so the consultant is recommending they only get the cost of living increase.
The CRD board will also contemplate a 14 per cent pay increase for themselves at Wednesday’s meeting. It’s meant to offset the impact of some tax code changes that resulted in the loss of their tax-free allowance for non-accountable expenses.
But tax watchdogs are concerned the senior manager and director pay hikes will put too much pressure on already ballooning municipal budgets.
“Grumpy taxpayers are particularly grumpy about the salary increase recommendation,” says John Treleaven of Grumpy Taxpayers. “It’s business as usual, it appears, in a very challenging economic environment for this community. The question is affordability and where does the consultant’s report on salary deal with affordability?”
Grumpy Taxpayers are urging the CRD board to not just look at comparable salaries across the country, but also whether taxpayers in this region can actually afford the raise.
They’re also calling for a major review and overhaul of the CRD, suggesting perhaps fewer managers are needed.