This fall Bill 8 has been swiftly moving through the stages of the legislative process in Ontario. It is An Act to promote public sector and MPP accountability and transparency by enacting the Broader Public Sector Executive Compensation Act, 2014 and amending various Acts. It includes new legislation that would be known as the Broader Public Sector Executive Compensation Act, 2014 ("Act").
"Designated employers" who are captured under the Act include hospitals, school boards, universities, colleges and community care access corporations. "Designated executives" who would be affected include those who are entitled to receive or could potentially receive at least $100,000 in compensation in a calendar year, and who are (i) the head of the designated employer, (ii) vice president or other executive, regardless of title, (e.g., chief administrative officer, chief operating office, chief financial officer or chief information officer) of the designated employer, or (iii) director of education or a supervisory officer of a school board.
If passed, the government would have authority to make regulations establishing "compensation frameworks". It would also have the power to issue directives to designated employers requiring them to provide detailed compensation information regarding their designated executives.
The compensation frameworks may provide for and limit the compensation provided to designated executives. Compensation includes salaries, salary ranges, benefits, perquisites, discretionary and non-discretionary payments, payments on termination, performance plans, incentive plans, bonus plans, allowances and other forms of remuneration.
Earlier this week, the government introduced a new amendment that effectively grandparents existing contracts for three years after the introduction of sector specific compensation frameworks.
If the proposed legislation is passed and proclaimed into force, we expect the government to issue a directive to collect compensation-related information from broader public sector employers. We also expect that it would begin consultation with impacted stakeholders as it analyzes the compensation information.