Payette & other former governors-general pensions to cost Canadians $18.7 million

Feature photo from a CTF News Release.

By: Broderick Visser
Written on: 2021-06-25

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to “rein in the governor-general pension plan before a new appointment is made,” reads the CTF release.

The CTF estimates pensions for five living former governor generals will cost Canadians more than $18 if they continue to collect them to the age of 90.

Screenshot from CTF News Release.

“The estimates are based on the annual governor-general pension amounts published in the public accounts since 2000-01, and assume the 2019-20 pension payment of $149,484 for future years,” reads the release.

“These platinum-plated pensions would be unthinkable for most Canadians. Trudeau needs to rein in these perks and the best time to do that is before a new governor general is picked.”

Franco Terrazzano, Federal Director for the CTF.

Regardless of how long a former governor general served in their role — they are still eligible for full pensions.

Julie Payette only served just over three years and will still rake in an estimated $4.8 million if she continues to collect the governor general pension to age 90.

vast majority of Canadians not working in government aren’t covered by a workplace pension plan.

Trudeau has already received a shortlist of potential candidates to fill the role. The CTF wants Trudeau to “rein in” or reduce the pension costs before picking Canada’s next governor-general.

On top of the pensions, former governors general can expense taxpayers for $206,040 per year for their whole lives and six months after their death.

The governor general’s annual salary is $302,114, according to the 2019-20 public accounts of Canada.

“Clearly perks need to be reined in when a governor-general can resign in disgrace after only serving for a few years and still pocket millions of dollars through the pension. Families and businesses have been tightening our belts and we expect the government to start making its perks more fair for taxpayers.”

Franco Terrazzano, Federal Director for the CTF.

More than 200,000 Canadians signed a petition delivered by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation in March that called on Trudeau to “put an end to a decades-old policy that allows former governors general to bill taxpayers for their expenses.”

Public Opinion surveys confirmed that Canadians overwhelmingly oppose the “overly generous compensation” that a retired governors general receives.

87 per cent of Canadians said that “current compensation and benefits are too generous.”

While 72 per cent of Canadians said that “post-retirement expense accounts should be entirely cut off.”

Former governor general Adrienne Clarkson has cost taxpayers more than $1.1 million in expenses since leaving his stake in 2005.

Payette still receives these benefits despite the reports of workplace harassment at Rideau Hall.

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