I’m outraged to read, “More city staff hit the $100,000 mark,” July 3. The Record.
In the last 18 months many jurisdictions have been looking at ways to cut costs while New Westminster is eager to increase them. From 38 to 72 city employees now in that special “$100,000 Club”! What are we thinking in New Westminster? Where does this insanity stop? Frankly I’m tired of the argument that you have to pay to get good people. I don’t feel that New Westminster gets its money worth. More and more companies continue to do more with less as do many governments and government agencies while we dole it out hand over fist. Hey, come work for New West where the “liv’in is easy”!
On the same train of thought, my electric bill keeps telling me we “enjoy the lowest electrical rates in North America!” How can this be without any economies of scale? Look at the wages we pay the top exec’s in that department of more than $805,000 in 2009. Or if you like more than $2,200 per day; a staggering sum before we even think of adding in the “front line” employees and equipment costs and replacement. This includes a General Manager and two Managers, an incredulous fee for a city the size of New Westminster. Talk about kingdom building! Is that sum with or without benefit? What are the extra costs of expense accounts? A Human Resources Department that sees the top two ranking individuals pulling in more than $300,000 a year. For that kind of money I would expect better managed labour contract negotiations and settlements to keep us more in line with other jurisdictions. A Purchasing Manager that makes $20,000 more than the yearly average identified by PMAC (Purchasing Management Association of Canada) reports for a qualified individual with a university degree and a CPP (Certified Professional Purchaser) designation from the PMAC.
I’m not out to attack individuals for their earnings, but to bring attention to the lack of fiscal control for something as simple as wages and benefits that you and I pay for again and again, everyday. For this we pay over priced senior administrators to tell us that we can expect to pay more and more in the future, including retroactive pay. Where is the control over our tax dollars? I guess the tail really does wag the dog in New West! No wonder they’re all smiling in their newspaper pictures, they’re all laughing all the way to the bank on your dime!
Mike Walmsley, Voice New Westminster Director