|Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan. (REUTERS/Mike Cassese)
TORONTO — Top bureaucrats will have their pay frozen for two years and capped at twice the premier's salary, Finance Minister Dwight Duncan said Thursday.
"These measures are necessary to help us meet our fiscal targets and we're asking everyone to do their share," Duncan said in a release.
New measures to be introduced in a bill will cover all managers in the Ontario public service (OPS) and broader public service (BPS) and includes a permanent, hard cap on top executive pay of $418,000 — something the New Democratic Party has advocated for some time.
The OPS includes those who work for government ministries, and the BPS includes those who work for government-funded agencies, boards, commissions and other entities, such
as school boards, hospitals, universities and colleges.
The pay freeze will save $12 million a year for OPS workers. It's not yet known how much freezing BPS salaries will save.
There are now at least 150 managers in the BPS and a smaller number in the OPS who make more than twice the premier's $209,000 salary. While those people will continue to earn their current salaries, the pay package of their successors will be pared back.
There would be exceptions for specialized jobs such as chief nuclear officer but those would require ministerial approval.
For the 8,800 OPS and 350,000 BPS managers in general, their pay will be frozen at whatever they received last year.
And even if they're eligible to earn performance pay, it won't be allowed to increase their pay over what their T4 recorded last year.
Officials say it will be tougher than the wage freeze introduced in the spring budget.