14 management jobs cut at N.L. Housing Corporation

The axe has fallen at a Crown corporation, two months after a warning from the province's finance minister.

Provincial government says eliminated positions will save $1.4M a year

Lisa Dempster, the minister responsible for the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation, says the cuts are part of a bigger plan to have 'a more efficient public sector.' (John Pike/CBC)

Fourteen management positions at the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation have been axed, as the Crown corporation that manages public housing in the province responded to a government directive to save money. 

Those cuts will save $1.4 million a year, the provincial government said in a news release Thursday.

"Options to streamline the organization were very carefully considered with client service and effective management being the primary focus. There will be no impacts to front-line services," the statement said.

There are still 62 management positions at the housing corporation. 

"[The] renewed structure enables us to reduce annual operating costs while continuing to deliver our programs and services to the people of the province who need our help the most," Glenn Goss, NLHC chair and interim CEO, said in a statement. 

​Warning from fall fiscal update

In his fiscal update last fall, Finance Minister Tom Osborne put agencies, boards and corporations on notice, and told them to bring spending under control. 

"I am making my expectations very clear. They need to find cost reductions and operational efficiencies," Osborne said in November, explaining that boards and agencies account for 60 per cent of government spending.

Finance Minister Tom Osborne announced in November that he wanted agencies, boards and commissions to tighten their belts. (CBC)

He warned he was prepared to introduce legislation to force them to do that. 

Osborne said during that fiscal update that while core government departments had reduced their spending by $22 million, agencies, boards and commissions had shown an increase of $18 million, partly because of pension obligations.

The cuts to management positions come as the government is offering a no-layoffs clause in a proposed contract to many of its unionized employees. The offer to the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Public and Private Employees also includes a wage freeze during the duration of the four-year contract. 

With files from Peter Cowan