Salary disclosures are nosy, unproductive ramblings


Posted by Ian:

Reader E. Thompson of St. Thomas is quite upset with my recent posting of public salary disclosures at city hall (other Elgin municipalities, hospital employees and school board officials must file this info by the end of the month). She calls publication of this mandated information as, “nosy, unnecessary, unproductive ramblings.” After speaking with her personally, we have cordially agreed to disagree. In addition, she is quite annoyed at my suggestion Joe Thornton, who was ceremonial chairman of the Timken Centre capital fundraising committee, might consider a monetary contribution to earn naming rights for the main rink, now that Walker Transport has declared bankruptcy. Otherwise, I believe city ratepayers should be recognized for their increased financial role in all of this. In any event, here is her full criticism of my comments. The post in question can be found here .

Re: March 6th City Scope by Ian McCallum

I have read several of Mr. McCallum’s columns that have made me twinge in horror. This one was no exception.
It’s bad enough that the individuals so dedicated to our community such as our Police Chief, Fire Chief and their officers have to read their personal business related to the income of their employ on the front page of the paper every year, then Mr. McCallum must turn around and make his comments on the subject as well.

Has Mr. McCallum ever taken the time or the opportunity to investigate all of the unpaid work these individuals do? Does he realize that many of these people also dedicate endless hours of volunteer work to our community for special events? I am still baffled as to the reason the St. Thomas Times Journal and it’s staff members feel it so important to publish such information. Is it jealousy? Why don’t you publish your salaries in there as well, then we can keep track of your income and see where our monthly subscription fees are going. I imagine you wouldn’t even consider it, stating it is confidential or personal. Then my question is “Why should city employees be any different?” It has been made clear that anyone interested can view them online. I can’t see any reason why anyone would other than to be nosy! And that’s what your comments were, nosy, unnecessary, unproductive ramblings.
Then after fuming over yet another publication of the “Sunshine Club” (to which I am in no way related to, or involved in) I come across the heading “The Name Game” in regards to the Timken Centre and I read this comment; “Unless a member of the Olympic hockey community steps forward and opens up his chequebook.” What gives you the right or any other member of this community to make such a comment. I can guarantee that the member to which you are referring went through the minor hockey system in St. Thomas the exact same way as all the other non-Olympic members. His family paid fees for him to play, and probably took part in fundraising for the teams he was on. To play, he paid, just like all of the rest, so tell me why you feel it necessary that he opens his chequebook? What about all of the other St. Thomas residents that went on to accomplish such wonderful things? Should they open their chequebook as well? If that’s the case I would advise any resident of St. Thomas who becomes a famous athlete, actor, singer, songwriter, etc. to not tell anyone where they grew up or members of the local media may decide they are “on the hook” for the financial shortfalls within the community.
Maybe it’s time that Mr. McCallum sit down and think about ways to highlight the wonderful citizens of St. Thomas rather than airing personal information and citing unsubstantiated solicitations.
E. Thompson
St. Thomas

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2 thoughts on “Salary disclosures are nosy, unproductive ramblings

  1. When the tax payer is involved, they should be informed where their tax dollars go.
    If anyone, who is paid by tax dollars is offended they have the opportunity to leave that position when their salaries are made public.
    The private enterprise is different. They are not funded by tax dollars and if they earn over the
    $ 100,000.00 mark, only the shareholders should be concerned.
    There is a reason for making these earnings public and I don’t understand why anyone making a salary of $ 100,000.00 plus would feel uneasy, unless they are not worth it.

  2. St. Thomas is a$$ backwards. Taxpayers pay taxes and should be informed on how the municipality is wasting our money. Whether it be through overpaid politicians who sit on their hands or overpaid and underworked city employees. However, I do think it is appropriate to ask or push for a person to come up with money to pay off the rinks shortfalls only because they are famous and used to live here. How about better management of the rinks to make sure they are making money. As for Mr. McCallum; how much do you make? Hopefully its not based on the shrinking readership of your paper or column or you may need to look for someone famous to put food on your table. Everyone is and should be encouraged to give their own opinion, however, Mr. McCallum seems to like to stir up drama for the sake of drama and personally attack people and organizations. How about covering some real issues.

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