This partially updates a 2009 In-Sights article, Patronage applied Liberally.
Silence in the BC Rail affair has been a costly purchase for the people of British Columbia as the BC Liberal Gravy Train rumbles through obscure and remote locations, boarding a few special travelers.
Despite disposition of its main operating assets in 2003, executive compensation since then at the near defunct British Columbia Railway Company, should cause public outrage. The Times Colonist noted in 2008 that management remuneration was astounding because this company employed only 30 full time equivalents to “run a railway that’s a piddling 39 kilometres long.”
Despite the criticisms, BC Liberals have been willing to use public money to reward people doing them favours. Kevin Mahoney, John Lusney, Linda Shute (replaced by Kevin Steinberig in 2009) and Gordon Westlake were the senior officers of BC Rail in recent years. In 2009, they burned through $38 million in operating expenses despite having almost no operations beyond receiving rents on long term leases and selling lands.
Ironically, BC Rail has suffered more operating losses since the railway was sold in 2003 than it did in the years preceding its sale. The four senior officers have taken total remuneration in the last four years of:
2007: $ 1,244,799
2008: $ 1,209,167
2009: $ 1,059,285
2010: $ 1,234,546
Kevin Mahoney was terminated March 31, 2010 and paid $392,333 severance and $11,899 unused vacation. John Lusney was also terminated March 31, 2010 and paid $203,033 severance and $23,355 unused vacation. SOURCE
Many of us in alternative media complain about extravagant amounts paid BC Ferries senior executives but at least those folks have a business to run. Most of the millions tossed to the winds at BC Rail are simply buying silence about the fraudulent sale of railway assets in 2003 and facilitating the quiet giveaway of BCR’s once valuable landbank. In my view, this latter theft is the most egregious part of the entire railway fraud.
Categories: BC Rail