Regional District of Nanaimo costs increased due to higher director compensation

NANAIMO – Financial figures were released as part of annual Statement of Financial Information.

New rates in place for 2015 led to increased compensation for directors, according to Regional District of Nanaimo’s annual statement of financial information.

A district-appointed committee established new compensation prior to the 2014 municipal election, with base remuneration for municipal directors increasing to $13,300 from $11,855. Rural area directors’ compensation rose to $24,285 from $18,440.

Regular meeting attendance is covered in the base amount, said Tiffany Moore, regional district manager of accounting services, but directors received $70 for additional public and advisory committee meetings.

Among Nanaimo-area rural representatives, Alec McPherson, Cedar-area director, saw the highest remuneration in 2015 with $36,503, up from $26,267 in 2014.

Howard Houle, Garbiola Island-area director, saw his total remuneration rise to $34,214 in 2015, from $24,376 in 2014.

Extension-area director Maureen Young’s compensation rose to $34,382 in 2015, after receiving $23,281 the previous year.

Bob Rogers, Nanoose Bay area director, wasn’t on the last board, being sworn in late in the 2014 fiscal year, and as such, received $709 in 2014 and $33,511 in 2015.

Similarly, Colin Haime, Lantzville mayor and deputy board chairman, received $456 in 2014 and $16,216 in 2015.

Bill McKay, Nanaimo mayor and director, topped all Nanaimo directors with $15,626 in 2015, after receiving $1,096 in 2014, when he was an alternate director.

Bill Bestwick and Jim Kipp, Nanaimo directors who were on the previous board, saw remuneration rise from $12,625 and $12,315 to $14,836 and $15,156 respectively.

Jerry Hong, Wendy Pratt, Ian Thorpe and Bill Yoachim are first-time Nanaimo directors.All received $456 in 2014 and their remuneration in 2015 ranged from $14,276 and $15,376.

McPherson topped the expense list with $10,599 in 2015, followed by Houle with $9,742, Rogers with $8,305 and Young with $4,313. Both McPherson and Houle said mileage and travel were notable expenses, with Houle taking the Gabriola ferry and McPherson having a long distance to drive.

McPherson said there is a $2,000 allowance for technology in a director’s first year of their term and he bought a Microsoft Surface Pro tablet.

Directors from Lantzville and Nanaimo all had expenses under $374.

Expenses and compensation for directors and alternates amounted to $74,540 and $418,317, respectively, in 2015.

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