Jim McDonell Calls McGuinty Government to Task Over Wage Freeze

August 29, 2012

QUEEN’S PARK – Jim McDonell, MPP tabled a motion today that calls upon the McGuinty Government to impose a fair, across-the-board public sector wage and bonus freeze for at least two years.

McDonell commented: “Dalton McGuinty talks restraint, but delivers more wasteful spending. The current debate over teacher’s compensation further proves this Government’s failure at delivering the goods. While Ontario’s teachers are about to have their compensation frozen, OPG employees will receive a 3% pay hike over the same period and ninety-eight percent of public sector managers received bonuses totalling over $360 million. The PC Caucus has been clear from the beginning: we must stop the bleeding by freezing all public sector compensation and closing the bonus loopholes, fix the McGuinty Government’s spending addiction and reduce the size and cost of government. McGuinty admits that Ontario’s finances need urgent fixing, but lacks the backbone to follow though. If the situation is so grave, why are they freezing the wages of only one of the over 4,000 public service collective agreements? Is this just a ploy to change the channel away from the scandals at ORNGE and the $190 million seat-saver cancellation of the Mississauga Power Plant and their gross mismanagement of the provinces finances?”

The motion will be debated September 13 and reads as follows:

In the Opinion of the House, the $35.6 million spent by the Government, to pay 8,700 of 8,900, or 98% of eligible managers and executives in Ontario’s Public Service a bonus on top of their salaries during a period of fiscal restraint was an outrageous waste of taxpayer dollars caused by nine years of overspending.

Therefore, the Liberal Government, in order to protect things that Ontarians care about, such as, healthcare, education and paying down Ontario’s record-level debt, should heed the advice of the Progressive Conservative Party and institute an immediate, fair and reasonable across the board broader public sector wage freeze, including a freeze on all bonuses paid to public service employees, including managers and executives for a period of no less than two years, and that any employee in the broader public service who receives a bonus within the wage and bonus freeze period, as a result of contractual agreements or other reasons shall have an amount equal to said bonus clawed back from their salary for the entire duration of the wage and bonus freeze.