Payouts to defeated, retiring Alberta politicians could cost $13 million

By on May 8, 2015


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EDMONTON — The Canadian Taxpayers Federation says Albertans are on the hook for $13.4 million in transition allowances after this week’s provincial election.

Former premier Alison Redford put an end to transition allowances back in 2012, but the move was not retroactive.

That means that 74 retired or defeated members of the legislature will be collecting big cheques on their way out.

The transition allowance payment is based on three months salary for each year served as MLA.

The CTF says some of the highest payouts will go to defeated Tory MLA Gene Zwozdesky, who will collect $874,000, and retired MLA Yvonne Fritz, who will get $873,000.

Paige MacPherson of the CTF says the election night parties may be over but taxpayers are stuck with the hangover.

“These politicians are now out of office, and yet we’re still paying them to leave,” says MacPherson.

Of those receiving payment, 25 are retiring and 43 were defeated. MacPherson is happy that transition payments have been scrapped for MLAs taking office after 2012, but still believes they are receiving too much in RRSPs.

“The CTF is supportive of a matching RRSP contribution,” says MacPherson. “However, the current agreement has taxpayers shelling out up to $4.50 for every $1 contributed by an MLA.”