Nanaimo city manager tops annual pay report

NANAIMO – The City of Nanaimo has released its annual Statement of Financial Information.

What do a Ferrari and Nanaimo’s city manager have in common?

Their price tag.

City manager Ted Swabey made more than $231,356 in his first full year as top bureaucrat – nearly the equivalent of a 2015 Ferrari.

While still below the pay of former city manager Al Kenning, the salary makes Swabey the municipality’s highest earner of 2014.

Nanaimo has released its Statement of Financial Information, detailing the earnings and expenses of 232 of the highest-paid employees.

Nineteen new names moved onto the roster this year of employees with remuneration beyond $75,000. The bracket has been swelling every year since 2008, from 112 to 176 by 2011 and 213 in 2013.

Thirty-eight per cent of the list is dominated by fire department employees, but the upper echelons of salary-makers are department heads.

Swabey made about 20 per cent more than the second-highest earner in his first full year after taking over from Kenning in September 2013.

While statements of financial information haven’t yet been released by other similar-sized cities, documents from 2013 show the pay isn’t all that uncommon.

Kenning made $237,767 in 2013, while Kamloops CAO David Trawin pulled in $240,608 and Ron Mattiussi, Kelowna city manager, made $258,728.

Tom Hickey, general manager of community services, had the highest remuneration next to Swabey with $190,289, followed by Toby Seward, director of social and protective services, at $161,050.

Kenning lingered on the payroll with $155,521 last year, thanks to payouts for sick time and 8.8 months of banked vacation. Terry Hartley, the now-resigned director of human resources and organizational planning, rounded out the top five with $154,791.

Sasha Angus, CEO of the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation, was in the ninth spot for highest earners with $139,374.

The highest expenses came from Diane Hiscock, manager of revenue services, at $14,761 – 83 per cent of which covered moving expenses when she was hired by the City of Nanaimo. Lesley Anderson, NEDC’s executive director of destination management, spent $14,180, including $1,033 on a meeting with Phil Nuytten with Nuytco Research Ltd. and Pacific Northwest Flower show, and a $1,291 workshop.

The full report is available at www.nanaimo.ca.