BC Hydro

BC Hydro salaries

BC Hydro withheld its Financial Information Act Return for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020 until September 30, the final day before failure to publish the report would have offended provincial law.

The provincial crown corporation that is currently on a massive spending program does not care to be transparent or accountable to citizens.

The utility reported 5,222 employees earned more $75,000.

3,810 of those people were paid more than $100,000, with the average being $137,823.

1,046 had salaries of more than $150,000, with the two highest being CEO Chris O’Riley at $456,000 and Site C boss Ken McKenzie at $360,000.

The average annual income for people employed full time in British Columbia was about $60,000 in 2019.

424 BC Hydro employees were paid expenses in excess of $20,000, with the highest being $96,588 paid to T. Thompson.

Categories: BC Hydro

20 replies »

  1. Note 15 – $1,065 million moved from regulatory accounts to cover a $360 million operating loss. This all happened before Covid started impacting energy sales.

    Must be nice to have a creative way to obtain an extra $1 billion to make you balance sheet look better, where does that money come from? How will it be repaid?


  2. At a guess the possible place is a transfer to the province. This would be an example of just who is responsible for financial losses of crown corporations, citizens of BC.

    Non-domestic buyers of electricity have succeeded getting their electricity at $30 /MWhr when we citizens pay $120 MWhr and have too much electricity for our own needs but not enough revenues to cover our costs.

    Its called being a supplier dupe. Probably the real purpose of NERC.


  3. Hydro Linemen make good money every year but they have to work overtime to receive that level of pay. They are the ones who are out in the middle of the night in the worst of weather to repair downed hydro lines so the rest of us can keep our sorry butts warm. Those people are worth every penny they receive. And, oh yeah, high voltage is very dangerous, you and your crew members have to have their wits about them when working with it or someone could be dead in a flash by a simple mistake.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mike,

      You are so correct. The problems at BC Hydro have nothing to do with the personnel costs; the problems occur when those personnel are not qualified or accountable for the poor decisions they make.

      We need to go through the list of employees paid over $75k and let go of anyone who does not have post secondary education or trade. Next, senior management in technical departments much have a declaration of competence filed in adherence to the Professional Reliance act. If they are not qualified, they must be let go.

      There are serious, systemic issues at BC Hydro and we need serious people in charge to make the necessary changes.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I would suggest that the first phase not be overly constrained by educational backgrounds.

        Certifications are important in many aspects of almost any field, but there should always be consideration given to people who whether by aptitude, experience, or simply their dynamic of being within a team structure are unquantifiable assets, who should not be casually discarded.

        Likewise, it is my opinion that looking at personnel is usually a good thing when attempting to streamline and raise efficiency, but often (and especially with this case) there are problems that are systematic and which run deeply into the structure of the organization.

        It seems that BC Hydro, rather than being driven by a mandate to ensure clean power may be instead guided by a drive that runs through all of it’s administrative staff: corporate advancement fever.

        Many of it’s excesses would in that light just be sad attempts at over-compensating for being public service instead of wheel and deal corporate rock stars, or some such.


        • I agree, especially with your first two paragraphs.

          Two memories from my working career stand out in that regard.

          One is of an airport field maintenance superintendent who had little or no formal education, but was internationally respected in his area of expertise. There was certainly no one better in Canada.

          The other is of some lawyers from the federal Justice department, who while well educated and authorized to hang credentials on their office walls, were so mind-numbingly lacking in common sense they were of little use to the organization to which they were seconded.


          • Perhaps we should be standing clear of issues of creds and personalities if something is to be done.
            Over my years of working big and small issues I found the best traction was when I found folks doing things outside the law and or common sense. They made themselves targets..

            With BC Hydro there are examples of non-compliance with BC laws . Speaking as a citizen , like everyone here, we are responsible for the financial obligations of all crown corporations and that I do not like without having a vote/referendum.


        • I agree that not all credentials prove merit. However, we just need to remember the Challenger disaster to see the consequences of politics overriding engineering decisions. Electricity is not law, politics, project management or communications. If the wrong decisions are made, people and property will be harmed. We can no longer tolerate any engineering decisions being overrode by politicians that don’t even know Ohm’s law.

          Would you trust a surgeon to operate on you if they had been promoted because they are a team player, but had never gone to medical school?


      • I’ve worked at BC Hydro and I can tell you managers are paid way too much and are not qualified for o do the job. I’d ax most of them and reduce their salaries by 30%. I would also let go anyone who’s working in a field they have no education in. Such as an engineer in procurement or a HR manager in procurement. One of the worst departments is procurement but they have a huge impact.


  4. BC Hydro sold $49million less in domestic electricity in F20 vs F19. They also sold $268million less electricity to third parties in F20 vs F19.

    This is the beginning of the death spiral for BC Hydro. Add additional electricity generated from Site C and the operating losses will increase by $60-300million per year. We are looking at a potential $1 billion loss per year for the next 20 years. If rates go up, more large industries will leave BC. If rates stay the same, taxpayers will have to bail out the utility.

    Ask the MLA candidates in your riding how they plan on rectifying this situation at BC Hydro. My bet is 90% won’t have a clue what you’re talking about and they will dodge the question.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are dead right about that.

      In South Delta we have an anointed Liberal MLA, who is a one man band when it comes to replacing the Massey tunnel with a mega bridge. No distortion of the truth is too small and if it wasn’t for swift rebuttal by Doug Massey, those distortions, repeated often enough tend to be perceived by the public as true.

      Yet the good Liberal never answers one question, where will the traffic go?

      Yes, the MoT has an answer, make the 99 eight lanes, using three as a parking lot. And the MoT types collect heft salaries too, yet, they still can’t make lane dividing lines visible in the rain at night.


  5. I think the whole supply side economics, they build it and they will come philosophy of the Bennett era, is still our biggest problem with Hydro. There is a belief that selling more electricity is a good thing and that that priority outweighs any consideration of net benefits.

    I expect there is belief in the notion that Hydro is ‘clean’ and that it will be needed some day, and that is used as an internal justification. Well that plus the salaries that are being pulled in. I expect the justification then covers the lack of ability to build something like Site C in the geological mess where it is sited, despite the fact that previous generations of engineers and economists declined to build the proposed dam.


  6. I think we need to start a community contest for a new tag line at BC Hydro because they definitely are not Power Smart anymore. Here are some ideas:

    BC Hydro – Competence Depart
    BC Hydro – Ethics Desert

    BC Hydra – Multi-headed Brain Fart


  7. One wonders how many of those high salaried executives in charge will wish they worked anywhere else if Site C collapses on “their watch”


    • Don’t be surprised when their resumes tout the success they had managing a $15 billion project… no one will mention the initial budget of $6.6 billion.

      Experts at spin and they will have the support of both the Liberals and NDP. It’s sad how voters are more interested in what’s going on in the US than the billions of their tax dollars going to waste.


  8. “It’s sad how voters are more interested in what’s going on in the US than the billions of their tax dollars going to waste.”

    That’s all they are being fed from every Canadian mainstream media outlet, including radio. The induced fixation on the orange man down south has provided cover for an historic economic and social makeover here. The only valid debate is whether it was planned or was opportunistic. Regardless; the results are the same. While everyone at the circus laughed at the clown and the freak show, their cars were stolen from the parking lot.


  9. How about ask how much it cost BC Hydro to implement SAP. Last time I check in 2013 it was 71m and they only implemented the finance module. Dan Olson was running it then and they got him to implement it now. Non of the managers were fired the first time even though they wasted tens of millions of tax payers dollars. Many of those managers were promoted. Taxpayers should be livid.


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