The Skeena-Queen Charlotte Regional District finished 2009 with a $200,000 deficit instead of the $700,000 surplus it had budgeted for, according to audited financial statements presented at the last board meeting May 28 in Prince Rupert.
Much of the shortfall was due to the islands garbage system, which cost almost $1.2-million to run last year, substantially more than expected. The regional district also spent more than it had budgeted for administration, and slightly more than expected on the Sandspit water system.
The shortfall came even as the regional district increased its revenues, hiking the total amount of tax it collected from property owners by an overall 15 percent (taxpayers were affected differently by this increase, depending on where they live and how much their property assessment changed).
The 10 directors on the regional district board collected a total of $142,000 in remuneration during 2009, up from $123,000 the year before, according to the regional district's statement of financial information, an annual report which was also presented at the May 28 meeting. They spent less on travel however: $32,000 in 2009, compared to $56,000 in 2008.
Masset mayor Barry Pages, the chair of the regional district, received $15,569 in remuneration and was reimbursed for $5,500 in expenses. Port Clements mayor Cory Delves received $9,678 in remuneration and $2,818 in expenses and Queen Charlotte mayor Carol Kulesha received $9,828 in remuneration and $2,918 in expenses.
The area directors are paid a bit more than the regular directors, who also receive remuneration from their own municipalities. Area D director Brad Setso received $11,328 plus expenses of $3,794. Area E director Travis Glasman, who resigned halfway through 2009, received $5,889 plus expenses of $1,928. The new Area E director, Evan Putterill, who served for only the last part of 2009, received $3,726 plus expenses of $4,917.
Remuneration and benefits for the regional district's employees came to $840,000 in 2009, compared to $775,000 the year before.