BC’s Million Dollar Man

David Hahn

David Hahn, BC Ferries’ CEO – is this man worth $1,000,000?

Transportation Minister Shirley Bond was told that B.C. Ferries boss David Hahn’s compensation package was more than $1 million “probably two or three weeks ago.”

But Bond said Wednesday she couldn’t disclose that information — and that it wasn’t why she and Finance Minister Colin Hansen suddenly announced a sweeping review of B.C. Ferries and TransLink this week.

The review will look at how the two services are performing and what they’re paying their top bosses.

It was announced just a day before a report from the Canadian Security Administrators revealed the lucrative compensation given to Hahn, his top five administrators and the board of B.C. Ferries.

“The discussion about the review had already taken place,” said Bond.

“I was doing a series of stakeholder meetings, as I do, as the new minister. The chair of the board in the discussion indicated they would be forced to disclose David Hahn’s salary as a result of the bond offering they were involved in.”

“I am not in a position to disclose David Hahn’s salary. That is a responsibility that’s up to the board of B.C. Ferries.”

Bond called Hahn’s deal “shocking.”

“That’s a very large number,” said Bond. “I think it is shocking for people to hear that the CEO of B.C. Ferries makes that salary.”

The situation was more than shocking for MLA Gary Coons [North Coast], NDP ferry critic.

“I think it’s outrageous as we see ferry fares skyrocketing, we’re seeing service levels cut, we’re seeing the sustainability of ferry-dependent communities [threatened] with loss of tourism and businesses going bust,” said Coons.

The report pegged Hahn’s salary, bonuses and benefits at a total of $1,034,680 for the fiscal year ending March 31.

Executive vice-presidents Michael Corrigan, Glen Schwartz, Robert Clarke and Capt. Trafford Taylor had compensation packages for the same period that ranged from $485,509 to $561,747.

None of that information had surfaced previously and Coons called for a return to more accountability for B.C. Ferries, which is a private company that he said has one shareholder — Finance Minister Colin Hansen, representing the taxpayers who fund the ferries to the tune of $170 million annually.

Source: Province Newspaper, July 30, 2009

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