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PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 4:31 pm    Post subject: Hydro One salaries should be made public Reply with quote

( more madness from the Wynne government , they are hiding behind bizarre rules and now won't let anyone know what the executives and employees at hydro one are making , these used to be public and on sunshine list but since they sold some shares in the company they are not even though the province is still the majority owner of hydro one )

Electricity prices spur renewed push to have Hydro One $100,000-plus salaries on the 'sunshine list'

Ontarians trying to pay their bills deserve to know how many workers make the list, MPPs say.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne brushed aside opposition MPPs concerns that Hydro One employees are no longer on the sunshine list.

By Rob FergusonQueen's Park Bureau

Fri., Feb. 10, 2017

Ontarians struggling to pay high electricity prices are entitled to know how many Hydro One workers are making more than $100,000 a year, the Progressive Conservatives say.

MPP Todd Smith, his party’s energy critic, renewed a push to have thousands of workers at the partially privatized utility put on the “sunshine list” of public sector workers earning six figures.

“The government is still the majority shareholder,” Smith, his party’s energy critic, told a news conference Friday, noting the province still owns a 70 per cent stake in the company.

“Kathleen Wynne and the Liberal government have the right to say…it should be made public,” he added, referring to the salary information.

As it now stands, Hydro One, like other publicly traded companies, is legally required to reveal the compensation packages of only its top five executives — one of whom, chief executive, Mayo Schmidt, earns $4 million, Smith said.

He and New Democrat MPP Catherine Fife said the disclosure does not go far enough given that the last time Hydro One was required to report salaries more than 4,300 employees at the parent company and subsidiaries were on the sunshine list.

“Before Kathleen Wynne hid Hydro One salaries the CEO was making $745,208,” Smith said. “How much are the rest of the staff receiving?”

Premier Kathleen Wynne brushed aside the concerns, but did not acknowledge the salary disclosure rules are now much less stringent for Hydro One

“Once a year they have to disclose all that information to their shareholders,” Wynne told reporters in Brantford.

“So that’s been in place for some time and it’s in place for all publicly traded companies.”

Hydro One did not comment on the sunshine list demand and said it’s “good governance” for publicly traded companies to disclose details of executive compensation.

Wynne charged the Conservative plan to introduce a private members’ bill that would require a more full salary disclosure at Hydro One was an attempt to distract from Statistics Canada figures that 28,800 new jobs were created in the province last month.

Economic Development Minister Brad Duguid hailed that number as “fabulous” but the opposition parties noted that 82 per cent of those new jobs were part-time and that the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 6.4 per cent.

“Duguid’s bragging is unfounded,” said Fife, citing a “dramatic” increase in part-time work. “Too many people have lost good jobs and are working in part-time jobs.”

The unemployment rate in Ontario has been below the national average for 22 months and is near its lowest point in eight years.

Wynne has promised more relief on hydro rates before the government’s spring budget. The 8 per cent HST on electricity bills has been rebated since January 1.

Her government is half-way through its plan to sell a 60 per cent stake in Hydro One, raising an estimated $9 billion for electricity debt reduction and improved public transit.

A spokesman for Energy Minister Glenn Thibeault said any further share sales depend on market conditions.


Joined: 02 Mar 2009
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Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tories call for Hydro One salaries to be included in sunshine list

Hydro One

Allison Jones, The Canadian Press
Published Friday, February 10, 2017 1:44PM EST
Last Updated Friday, February 10, 2017 3:07PM EST

TORONTO - The Progressive Conservatives are calling on the Liberal government to publish Hydro One salaries when the so-called sunshine list of public-sector workers making more than $100,000 comes out.

Salaries at Hydro One were exempted from the annual public sector salary disclosure last year once the government sold the first 15-per-cent tranche of the formerly public utility.

The former Hydro One CEO was paid $745,000 in 2014, and about 3,800 workers were paid over $100,000 that year, but they're no longer included in the public disclosure.

The current Hydro One CEO, earns a $850,000 base salary that could rise to a maximum of $4 million with bonuses, but the salaries of thousands more are no longer known.

“Everything about this deal has happened behind a big, black curtain,” said PC energy critic Todd Smith, noting the company is also no longer subject to oversight by legislative officers such as the ombudsman and auditor general.

The Tories have called before for Hydro One salaries to stay public at least while the government still owns at least 50 per cent - about 30 per cent has been sold so far and the government intends to sell 60 per cent. Smith said he intends to introduce a private member's bill to amend the Public Sector Salary Disclosure Act if the government doesn't heed his call this time.

“Clearly I think if we can continue to pressure the government to be more transparent about it, I think that's the goal here, is to provide that transparency to the public,” he said.

A spokesman for Energy Minister Glenn Thibeault sounded unreceptive to Smith's call and suggested his press conference was an attempt to distract from good job numbers released Friday.

“As previously disclosed, Hydro One is now a publicly traded company and must annually and publicly report on the compensation of its executives, as they have always done,” Colin Nekolaichuk said in a statement.

Publicly traded companies are obliged to disclose the salaries of their CEO, CFO and next three highest-paid executives if they earn more than $150,000.

Hydro One CEO Mayo Schmidt was appointed Aug. 31, 2015, and in the last four months of that year earned $1.3 million, according to the company's management information circular. The CFO could earn up to $1.5 million with bonuses. Three more executives earned $2.4 million in 2015.

NDP critic Catherine Fife said the general public has no patience for those types of salaries at Hydro One.

“It adds insult to injury to their already high hydro rates,” she said.

The issue of executive compensation is top of mind right now as broader public sector agencies propose new packages for top brass as a wage freeze lifts - and salaries floated by organizations such as colleges, transit agency Metrolinx and Ontario Power Generation have drawn criticism.

Premier Kathleen Wynne told OPG it must come up with a more reasonable salary range than the $3.8-million cap it arrived at for the CEO. That would be a raise of about 153 per cent from the current $1.5 million the CEO earns, though OPG has said the actual salary would be significantly less than the cap.

Wynne's comments last week came after her government faced days of criticism for raises totalling up to $8 million for about 80 executives at OPG and a potential raise of up to $118,000 for the head of Metrolinx.


Joined: 02 Mar 2009
Posts: 8412
Reputation: 282.2
votes: 3
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hydro One salaries absent from Ontario sunshine list

Retired OPG chief executive Tom Mitchell held top spot on ‘sunshine list,’ but Hydro One, which is being partially privatized, no longer discloses salaries.

Hydro One employees' salaries are absent from this year's sunshine list in what critics call a

Torstar News Service

Hydro One employees' salaries are absent from this year's sunshine list in what critics call a "glaring omission."

By: Torstar News Service Published on Mar 24 2016

With a payout of $1.5 million, recently retired chief executive Tom Mitchell from Ontario Power Generation remained atop the provincial sunshine list of public sector workers making more than $100,000 a year.

But absent from the 2015 salaries released Thursday were thousands of executives and staff at Hydro One, which is being partially privatized and is no longer subject to disclosure laws.

That is a “glaring omission,” said Progressive Conservative finance critic Vic Fedeli (Nipissing), who earned the base salary of $116,550 for MPPs.

“Although we still own 85 per cent of Hydro One, the people of Ontario now have no access to the knowledge of what the salaries are,” he told reporters.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath said taxpayers still deserve to know about pay packets at Hydro One, which is being parcelled off by Premier Kathleen Wynne to raise $9 billion to reduce debt and fund public transit expansion.

“We will never know how much the increase in salaries that’s occurring is going to be impacting our bills. We all know our bills are going through the roof already.”

Despite the exemption for Hydro One, the number of workers on the list still increased by about 4,000 to 115,432.

That sets another all-time high amid questions as to whether the $100,000 threshold, in place for almost 20 years since the system was established by former Progressive Conservative premier Mike Harris, should increase to account for inflation.

Premier Kathleen Wynne said she’s not about to change the level intended to shed light on who is earning what from taxpayers.

“Is $100,000 a lot of money? I think it is,” she told reporters at Danforth Tech before the list was released. “I think it is still relevant.”

Horwath, who represents a Hamilton riding and earned $158,157 as leader of the third party in the legislature, agreed.

“The average household income in this province is much, much less than $100,000 and I know where I come from there’s a lot of people that are trying to make it on much, much less,” she said.

“It’s a good round number that people can compare to.”

According to the Bank of Canada inflation calculator, $100,000 in 1996 is worth $142,338 in 2015 dollars, meaning that would be the level the list would have to be set at if it were adjusted for the rise in the Consumer Price Index over 19 years.

Conversely, $70,255 in 1996 would be worth $100,000 today.

Wynne defended the timing of the release of the data, which often stirs up a hornet’s nest of criticism over public sector wages.

It came on the day the verdict in the high-profile Jian Ghomeshi case was handed down, and on the eve of the Easter long weekend.

“We had no idea when the Ghomeshi hearings were going to be,” said Wynne, whose 2015 earnings held steady at $208,974 because of a salary freeze.

By law, the government must release the data by fiscal year-end, which would have given it until next Thursday.

Horwath said it’s clear the government picked Thursday in hopes of sweeping the public sector earnings under the rug.

“Of course, this is what the government does: they use these kinds of opportunities when there’s another big news story or when there’s a long weekend to try to avoid the accountability and transparency on things like the sunshine list.”

Also absent from the sunshine list is new PC Leader Patrick Brown, who did not win a seat in the legislature until last September and did not cross the $100,000 threshold.

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Hydro One salaries should be made public

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