Ontario Sunshine List of highest-paid public sector employees reveals thousands earn more than premier

More than 115,000 Ontario public sector employees made more than $100,000 last year, the province's annual Sunshine List shows.

List tracks salaries of public sector employees who made more than $100,000 last year

If the list were adjusted for inflation since 1996, the new entry-level benchmark salary would be around $142,000, according to the Bank of Canada's inflation calculator. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)

More than 115,000 Ontario public-sector employees made more than $100,000 last year, the province's annual Sunshine List shows.

Of those workers, 58 of them earned more than $500,000 in 2015.

Ontario Power Generation chief executive Tom Mitchell topped the list for the second year in a row. He earned $1.6 million in salary and benefits last year. In 2014, he was the leader with $1.55 million in salary and benefits.

Second in line was president and CEO of the University of Toronto Asset Management Corporation William Moriarty, who earned more than $1.5 million in salary and benefits in 2015.

For her part, premier Kathleen Wynne earned a salary of $208,974 — the 3,682nd spot on the list. That means 3,681 people earned more than the boss.

Pan Am Games staffers, TTC workers

More than 2,000 Toronto Transit Commission workers made the $100,000 salary cutoff.

The sunshine list also includes 68 employees of the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto, 10 of whom out-earned the premier, topping more than $300,000 in salaries and benefits.

Donna Quan, who left her post as director of education for the Toronto District Public School Board in November 2015 after a scathingly critical report, far out-earned Wynne.

Quan is now seconded to the Education Ministry, and brought in $607,287 in salary and benefits.

Beleaguered Goodwill CEO Keiko Nakamura, who recently stepped down from her role after the charitable organization went bankrupt, earned $233,196 in 2015.

And UP Express airport train president Kathryn Haley, earned $272,790. She resigned this week. 

In all, 115,431 earned more than $100,000 in 2015. That means the list added 3,993 names since 2014.

Interestingly, that spike in the number of people making big money occurred even with the chop of roughly 4,000 Hydro One workers — who became exempt from the list when the service went private.

Premier defends $100,000 cutoff

The Public Salary Disclosure Act requires organizations that receive public funding from the Province of Ontario to disclose annually the names, positions, salaries and total taxable benefits of employees paid $100,000 or more in a calendar year.

The act was brought in under the Mike Harris-led Progressive Conservative government in 1996.

If the list were adjusted for inflation since that time, the real entry-level benchmark salary would now be around $142,000 according to the Bank of Canada's inflation calculator. But soon before the list came out Thursday, Kathleen Wynne said the $100,000 cutoff is still appropriate.

"Is $100,000 a lot of money? I think it is," she said.

She also answered questions about the timing of the list's release. It came the day before the holiday long weekend and the same day on which the much-anticipated ruling in the Jian Ghomeshi trial was delivered.

"This list takes weeks, months to compile," Wynne said. "And the fact is, nobody can predict how busy a particular week is going to be."


  • A previous version of this story incorrectly called William Moriarty the president of the University of Toronto. In fact, he is president and CEO of the University of Toronto Asset Management Corporation.
    Mar 24, 2016 4:31 PM ET


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