Regional District of Nanaimo CAO Paul Thorkelsson is the highest paid employee of the three local governments that work for the people of Parksville Qualicum Beach.
Thorkelsson earned $208,388.13 in 2013 and was also paid $9,931.45 in expenses, according to financial statements local governments are mandated to release to the public.
The regional district had 32 (exempt, ie. non-union) employees make more than $75,000 last year. Twenty of those made more than $100,000. Twenty-five regional district employees who are members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) also made more than $75,000 in 2013.
The regional district paid $22.3 million in earning to its employees last year.
On the politicians’ side of the ledger, board chair Joe Stanhope was paid $41,127.86 in 2013, which includes the exempt allowance of $13,709.29. Stanhope was also paid for $12,842.43 in expenses. The regional district spent a total of $300,000 on remuneration for its 17 directors, plus $64,000 in expenses.
The City of Parksville spent just over $5 million paying its employees in 2013. Topping that list was CAO Fred Manson, who’s remuneration (including taxable benefits) was $164,746.50. Manson also had $9,153.71 in expenses.
The City of Parksville had 17 employees make more than $75,000 in 2013, including eight who made more than $100,000.
Mayor Chris Burger received $33,573.73 in remuneration last year, plus $4,902 in expenses. The city spent $118,641.61 on remuneration for its six councillors and mayor, plus a total of $34,117.90 in expenses, for a grand total of $152,759.51.
Mark Brown, the Town of Qualicum Beach’s CAO until his retirement in October, topped the list in that town with remuneration of $161,329 and expenses of $6,624 in 2013. John Marsh, the town’s CFO before Brown retired and currently the acting CAO, had $132,390 in remuneration and $5,273 in expenses.
The Town of Qualicum Beach paid employees a total of $4.2 million on remuneration in 2013. The town had a total of 14 employees who made more than $75,000 last year, six of which who made more than $100,000.
Mayor Teunis Westbroek’s remuneration was $22,983, plus $11,491 in expenses for a total of $34,474. He was also reimbursed for $11,797 in additional expenses, bringing his total to $46,271. The town spent a total (payroll, expenses and reimbursed expenses) of $162,616 on its four councillors and mayor.
Westbroek was asked to comment on the fact Qualicum Beach council, with five total members, cost Qualicum Beach taxpayers $10,000 more than Parksville taxpayers spent on its seven-member council.
“Whether it’s a smaller or bigger community, the issues are the same,” said Westbroek. “It’s not just what it costs — it’s what you get for it.”
Statements of Financial Information from all three municipalities are available at their offices and on their websites.