- A new report shows that tens of thousands of Quebec government employees make over $100,000 per year.
- The highest-paid government employee is the Hydro-Québec CEO.*
A report released by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) shows that "more than 43,000 Quebec bureaucrats are paid more than $100,000, costing Quebec taxpayers over $5 billion per year." The report is the result of over eight months of work and "more than 3,000 freedom of information requests to all levels" of the Quebec government, according to a press release. 450 organizations, however, "refused to comply with freedom of information laws," including "the Caisse de dépôt et de placement du Québec, the Conseil de gestion du Fonds vert, and the Université du Québec à Montréal."
"Too often, our governments hide behind closed doors when it comes to employee compensation," said CTF Quebec Director Renaud Brossard.
"Today, we are pleased to open those doors and reveal the number of high-earning bureaucrats paid with Quebec taxpayers' money."
CTF found that 43,469 public sector employees make over $100,000/year.
The highest-paid government employee? Hydro-Québec CEO Éric Martel, who earns a whopping $559,866.
Quebec Premier François Legault, for the record, receives a total annual remuneration of $196,193.
In light of its findings, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on the Government of Quebec to improve the transparency surrounding its employees' pay.
"Taxpayers in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario are already entitled to this minimum level of transparency from their governments," said Brossard.
"We see no reason why Quebec taxpayers should settle for less. Taxpayers are asking Quebec Premier François Legault to improve transparency by passing a law ensuring an official, comprehensive sunshine list is released annually by the government."
According to a report published by Quebec Institut de la statistique in November 2019, however, "Québec government employees have a lower average salary than all other Québec employees (-13.2%) and employees in the private sector (-10.2%)."
"In 2019, Quebec government employees [were] less behind other Quebec employees in terms of total compensation (-6.2%) than of salaries (-13.2%) due to a shorter standard workweek and more paid time off," the report continues.
"A shorter workweek also explains the parity with the private sector in terms of total compensation, despite the salary gap."
"In addition, benefit costs for Québec government employees, which represent 26.1% of salaries in 2019, are higher than those for other Québec employees (25.5%) and those of the private sector (22.7%)."
The government of Quebec has yet to respond to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation's latest report.
*This article has been updated.