Regional district wages drop

Wages are down slightly at the Regional District of North Okanagan.

A new report shows $5.8 million in salaries and $470,591 in expenses were paid out to RDNO employees in 2016, compared to $5.9 million in salaries and $462,101 in expenses.

“The line has been held on compensation for employees,” said Bob Fleming, board chairperson.

“The regional district’s total budget is $70 million and we need a fair amount of staff to function. A lot of that is with engineering and water.”

In 2016, there were 30 employees who earned more than $75,000 compared to 31 in 2015.

Leading the pack last year was David Sewell, chief administrative officer, who had remuneration of $163,115 and expenses of $19,759. That was followed by Dale McTaggart, engineering general manager, with a wage of $136,530 and expenses of $6,058, and Leah Mellot, electoral area general manager, with a salary of $132,648 and expenses of $5,100 in 2016.

“We fall in the middle of the compensation range (for regional districts),” said Fleming.

In terms of politicians, just over $300,000 was spent on remuneration and expenses for all directors and alternate directors in 2016, about the same as in 2015.

Rural Lumby director Rick Fairbairn, who was also chairperson in 2016, had remuneration of $41,328 and expenses of $11,65. That was followed by BX-Swan Lake director Bob Fleming with a wage of $27,691 and expenses of $6,914, and BX-Silver Star director Mike Macnabb with a wage of $24,357 and expenses of $4,419.

Remuneration for the other board members in 2016 was:

Kevin Acton – $12,705 (expenses $945)

Janice Brown – $10,085 (expenses $604)

Hank Cameron – $23,105 (expenses $7,988)

Juliette Cunningham – $16,520 (expenses $452)

Doug Dirk – $14,135 (expenses $422)

Shirley Fowler – $10,985 (expenses $692)

Herman Halvorson – $22,688 (expenses $7,242)

Catherine Lord – $10,685 (expenses $40)

Greg McCune – $10,985 (expenses $1,004)

Akbal Mund – $13,235 (expenses $233)

Brian Quiring – $9,335 (no expenses)

Quiring, through his company MQN Architects, had contracts with RDNO for work at the Performing Arts Centre, Oval Park and the regional district office.