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Wynne tells OPG to come up with 'more reasonable' CEO salary than $3.8M maximum

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne speaks during a media availability to discuss an energy innovation partnership between Alberta and Ontario at the Alberta Legislature Building in Edmonton on May 26, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Codie McLachlan

Premier Kathleen Wynne says Ontario Power Generation must come up with a more reasonable salary range than the $3.8-million cap it arrived at for the CEO.

Her comments to The Canadian Press come after her government faced days of criticism for raises totalling up to $8 million for about 80 executives at OPG and a potential raise of up to $118,000 for the head of transit agency Metrolinx.

As a wage freeze lifts, all broader public sector agencies have until September to post their proposals for new executive compensation packages.

But after public outcry over the OPG salaries and proposed Metrolinx raises, the government sent a memo today to the more than 300 broader public sector organizations saying it expects any increases to be “modest.”

OPG has said that even though the CEO’s salary cap is $3.8 million — up from the current salary of $1.5 million — he would earn significantly less, but Wynne says she thinks OPG said that because they know it’s too high.

Meanwhile, Treasury Board President Liz Sandals is apologizing for saying most GO train riders likely don’t have the qualifications to run a multi-billion-dollar corporation or nuclear operations.

Sandals made the remarks when she was asked how she thinks the raises look to people sitting on a delayed GO train.

She says she intended to “explain the need to recruit and retain a small number of highly specialized professionals who hold unique qualifications and experience and the connection to the salary expectations of the public.”

Sandals says in doing so she used language that was “insensitive” and doesn’t reflect her views.