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Mark Sullivan worth half a mil per year?

By johnboy - 8 October 2010 67

The Canberra Times reports that ACTEW has been dragged kicking and screaming happily complied with new legislation to divulge the pay of ACTEW CEO Mark Sullivan (also star of twitter and occasional RiotACT commenter.)

Mr Sullivan receives a package worth $637,970 a year, which includes a salary of $553,907 plus superannuation of $85,063.

By comparison, the heads of the Prime Minister’s Department, Treasury and Defence Terry Moran, Ken Henry and Ian Watt respectively were each paid about $503,000 last year, including super.

But Mr Sullivan’s salary falls short of the Defence Materiel Organisation’s chief Stephen Gumley, whose remuneration package last year was between $700,000 and $715,000.

Actew, an ACT Government-owned company, directly employs about 35 staff and supplies water to about 145,000 customers.

(While they might have 145,000 customers I’m pretty sure they supply water to everyone in the ACT)

It’s particularly nice that the amount is justified by the board’s unanimous approval.

ACTEW CEO Mark Sullivan earning $553,907pa

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67 Responses to
Mark Sullivan worth half a mil per year?
KB1971 12:11 pm 08 Oct 10

troll-sniffer said :

shadow boxer said :

I guess it depends on the performance of the organisation.

Power bills have doubled.
There is not enough water and what there is is rationed and you pay through the teeth for it.
The organisation was totally incapable of estimating the cost of a new dam and the Googong pipeway is looking shaky.

I wonder how much John Mackay gets for running this shambles ?

Populist comments more suited to a Pauline Hanson response than anything meaningful. Power bills may have doubled (I think that’s an exaggeration though) but from an artificially low base. We are going to have to get used to paying more for our laziness in relying on machines to do everything for us.

I’ve yet to see a CEO who can control a drought, but perhaps you can?

CEOs do rely on information provided by engineers and the like, and I believe that this was the case in the Cotter Dam fiasco. I recall hearing an explanation that the preliminary figures quoted were never all-encompassing and in response to a particular request, however I wasn’t there so I don’t know all the details, same as everyone else.

On the money Troll Sniffer. The Cotter Dam estimate issue was such a media beat up it wasnt funny, at least they sorted it by the time construction began. Imagine the kerfuffle it would have caused after the fact?

Shadow Boxer, do you believe everything placed in front of you by the media?

BTW, I used to work with his wife, lovely lady & my wife works for him indirectly & has nothing but praise.

Gungahlin Al 12:08 pm 08 Oct 10

I fail to see how this free-standing organisation is running things any better than it would have been run if held entirely within the government. And ‘having to pay’ wages like this is a spin-off this move.

If it had not been, it would be run as an arm of TAMS, with a manager in the $150,000 area.

I am fundamentally opposed to selling off or corporatising health, hygiene and core infrastructure projects.

I say this not from a populist position, but having served on a board responsible for the water supply for some 200,000 people, and on a Council that managed the water and wastewater treatment and distribution services for 116,000 people. We had very good people heading up these two organisations but they were all on a fraction of the money quoted above for ACTEW.

jimbocool 11:49 am 08 Oct 10

There’s a bit of confusion here. Actew – of which Mr Sullivan is the amply remunerated CEO – just does water, that’s why there’s only 35 employees. Even then, it’s water only in the purest sense – policy & dams – all the rest of the work, pipes, infrastructure & maintenance is done by ActewAGL. ActewAGL also does all the work on power and gas, including the maintenance of infrastructure and assets. The CEO of ActewAGL is a big gig and worth major bucks, CEO of Actew is equivalent to the head of a small sub agency of government like the LDA, or the Insurance Authority – salary in the $200k-$300k range (IMHO).

captainwhorebags 11:13 am 08 Oct 10

That’s a lot of money for running a municipal water and electricity board. I don’t know Mr Sullivan, I dare say that he is probably worth a package of that nature, but would we have the exact same outcome if the position was filled with someone who commands a $400,000 package?

What was the head honcho of ACTEA paid when it was a government organisation? Are the outcomes today any different? Is the water and electricity supply any more reliable?

Executive remuneration is a matter for the shareholders. As a government owned entity, that’s (indirectly) us.

BTW, what value do all those board members provide for their directors fees?
“Ladies and gentlemen of the board. I think our new strategy is as follows: Continue to provide water, electricity and gas distribution services to the A.C.T. in a monopolistic fashion”
“I say, good call”
“Yes, well done”
etc
etc

troll-sniffer 11:09 am 08 Oct 10

shadow boxer said :

I guess it depends on the performance of the organisation.

Power bills have doubled.
There is not enough water and what there is is rationed and you pay through the teeth for it.
The organisation was totally incapable of estimating the cost of a new dam and the Googong pipeway is looking shaky.

I wonder how much John Mackay gets for running this shambles ?

Populist comments more suited to a Pauline Hanson response than anything meaningful. Power bills may have doubled (I think that’s an exaggeration though) but from an artificially low base. We are going to have to get used to paying more for our laziness in relying on machines to do everything for us.

I’ve yet to see a CEO who can control a drought, but perhaps you can?

CEOs do rely on information provided by engineers and the like, and I believe that this was the case in the Cotter Dam fiasco. I recall hearing an explanation that the preliminary figures quoted were never all-encompassing and in response to a particular request, however I wasn’t there so I don’t know all the details, same as everyone else.

Chaz 10:58 am 08 Oct 10

he’s getting far too much money. it’s water, one of the basic life essentials. it’s should not be monopolised & besides, the dams are full. why are premiums still going up and rates taking a hike too? so mark can line his pockets?

Rollersk8r 10:31 am 08 Oct 10

100% with you lumnock.

I’m no corporate high flyer but it’s increasingly popular to say that no CEO is worth their salary. It’s an extremely superficial headline to stir anyone earning less – and never takes into consideration the years of effort and sacrifice the CEO has made to get themselves into that position. All we here is: they sit behind a desk – how dare they earn big dollars!

Of course – there’s a perception that wealthy people in trades, or business owners, or even high level IT people have earned their money through “real work”, so their income is none of our business.

georgesgenitals 10:25 am 08 Oct 10

Sounds about right to me. He has a lot of responsibility, and takes considerable career risk in such a role. ACTEW seem to be doing a reasonable job also, which wouldn’t happen if top management didn’t have their act together.

shadow boxer 10:17 am 08 Oct 10

I guess it depends on the performance of the organisation.

Power bills have doubled.
There is not enough water and what there is is rationed and you pay through the teeth for it.
The organisation was totally incapable of estimating the cost of a new dam and the Googong pipeway is looking shaky.

I wonder how much John Mackay gets for running this shambles ?

astrojax 10:07 am 08 Oct 10

Hank said :

I personally don’t think its anyone’s business what a CEO is paid. I would of tried to negotiate more.

wouldn’a go far in this quest wi’ grammar like that, lad…

mark is a nice chap and deserves whatever he has been able to negotiate for himself. that’s the game, isn’t it? i didn’t think the ceo of actewagl includes in its job description ‘moral compass for the masses’. it is probably too much, if we look at this from a socialist perspective, but entirely justified from the conservative standpoint.

p1 10:06 am 08 Oct 10

“Actew, an ACT Government-owned company, directly employs about 35 staff and supplies water to about 145,000 customers”

Does ACTew really only have 35 staff? I must personally know about a third of them…

PM 10:02 am 08 Oct 10

If he’s that good a negotiator, send him to the Middle East!

davesact 10:00 am 08 Oct 10

If he has managed to negotiate a salary like that good on him but I have to admit that half a million is an awfully large amount of money to be paid when departmental heads of much larger Commonwealth organisations receive less.

Hank 9:45 am 08 Oct 10

I personally don’t think its anyone’s business what a CEO is paid. I would of tried to negotiate more.

lumnock 9:41 am 08 Oct 10

There should be another poll option with ‘I do not know enough about his work role to make an educated opinion, which is why there is a board in the first place.’

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