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Hedley-Olalla rural director tops list of director's remuneration and expenses

FILE PHOTO - Electoral Area G Director Elef Christensen, in red in this May 18, 2016 photo, topped the list of director pay and expenses, totalling $39,231 in 2015.
June 15, 2016 - 2:30 PM

PENTICTON - The director of one of the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen's least regulated rural areas had the highest remuneration and expenses of any of the regional district’s rural directors in 2015, the latest Statement of Financial Information figures show.

Topping the regular director’s list for remuneration and expenses was Hedley-Olalla Area G Director Elef Christensen, who took home $28,214 in remuneration and expenses totalling $11,017, for a total of $39,231.

The expenses include $3,943.31 to attend three conferences last year — the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Conference in Edmonton, the Southern Interior Local Government Association Conference in Kamloops and Union of B.C. Municipalities Conference in Victoria.

Board Chair Mark Pendergraft pocketed $60,456 in remuneration and $12,294 in expenses.

Six directors took home more than $28,000 in remuneration last year, including Naramata Area E Director Karla Kozakevich ($31,326,) Cawston Area B Director George Bush ($29,916), West Bench Area F Director Michael Brydon ($28,677), Princeton rural Area H Director Robert Coyne ($28,242), Oliver rural Area C Director Terry Schafer ($28,242), and  Christensen ($28,214).

Remuneration for the regional district’s directors and chair totalled $420,125 in 2015, with expenses totalling $67,851.

Wages continue to move up at the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen with 23 employees making in excess of $75,000 last year, up from 14 on that list in 2013.

Of those top 23 wage earners, three made in excess of $100,000 including Chief Administrative Officer Bill Newell ($157,528), Community Services Manager Mark Woods ($104,593) and Development Services Manager Donna Butler ($102,100).

The top 23 wage earners took a total of $3,677,120 in renumeration and $84,008 in expenses, while the regional district’s remaining staff of 280, which includes full, part time, casual, temporary and fire department employees, took home a total renumeration of $5,747,522, and $132,792 in expenses in 2015.

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