The University of Calgary Students’ Union hopes to have more say about executive compensation following news their current president will receive almost $5 million upon his January exit.
Harvey Weingarten will receive a pension valued at $4.75 million after serving nine years as the university’s president, an expense missing from the school’s financial reports for six years.
“This price tag is really hard to understand for students,” said Charlotte Kingston, president of the students’ union. “It looks huge, especially when every year we’re having the cost of our education passed down to us in greater proportion through fees and increased tuition.”
Kingston said the union has been asking for a voice on the board of governors human resources and governance committee for a few years.
“I think incidents like this really highlight why students have been so vocal about having a position on that committee.”
Alberta’s auditor general is investigating the error and will report back in early October.
“In this case, we had an error that occurred in relation to communication that occurred between two departments and it’s been rectified,” said Jack Perraton, chair of the university’s board of governors.
“What we’ve done is make sure that the human resources work that is done will be at all times directly communicated to the financial people.”
Perraton said it was an error in communication that the pension figure wasn’t on the books, and is confident those problems are fixed, something the auditor general’s report will reflect, he said.