Letter: Accountability for wages lies with past and present councils

Editor: I read with interest and amazement the article by Dan Ferguson (The Times, Oct. 30) in which Shannon Harvey-Renner attempts to justify the wages of Mr. Bakken et al.

Let me first state the Township of Langley is not a private corporation, so comparing six Township personnel to the vastly overpaid non-public sector is a non-starter.

Corporate CEOs must answer to shareholders and must satisfy them or be removed, by vote, at any time.

Unfortunately, constituents, if unable to prove malfeasance, do not enjoy the same privilege. So as shareholders can control their monetary drain the constituents have little voice in controlling the wages of Township staff. Yes, we can vote every four years and elect a new council, but does anyone believe the wages of staff or council will be reduced by the new council?

Now, let’s get to the extensive training, skill, expertise and experience.

Anyone in any skilled blue collar position has these attributes as requirements; and in most cases all of the aforementioned are acquired by formal education, on-the-job experience, supplementary courses and seminars. In the case of Mr. Bakken et al, I would hazard a guess that all but formal education is at  tax payers’ expense.

That is a double whammy.

My consternation is not with Mr. Bakken and the staff; I am sure they believe they are worthy of every penny they receive.

My consternation is with past and present councils who do not have the foresight to realize if the present trend of ever increasing taxes at near past and present levels continue, only an ever-decreasing few will afford to have residence in the fabulous site we call Langley; a similar predicament to present day Vancouver and coming soon to Burnaby, New Westminster, and Surrey.

W.J. Farrall,

Langley