The sunshine list is in - better reading than the comic strips.

News 100 redBy Staff

March 27th, 2019



It is that time of year again – when we get to take a peek at just how much was earned by the civil servants in our community. It is that nosiness in our human nature.

If you're happy and you know it - clap your hands.

If you’re happy and you know it – clap your hands.

The report, published each year was started by Mike Harris when he was Premier.  It was called the sunshine list and the name stuck.

It is best to start with the big picture: The total salaries cost to the government was $19,207,224,624 in 2018, a 14.1% increase from the previous year.

That is $19 billion, $207 million, $224 thousand and $624 in payroll expense.

The media release refers to this as “unsustainable”. They certainly got that right.

Today the government released the salaries of Ontario Public Service and broader public sector employees who were paid $100,000 or more in 2018. Proactively releasing information on public sector salaries is part of the government’s commitment to being open and accountable to taxpayers.

City of Burlington Clerk's department did a great job last year during the United Way campaign drive. Interesting to see what they do this year. Burlington campaign has a $2 million target

City of Burlington Clerk’s department staff doing their bit to raise funds for the United Way.

The release shows the total number of employees disclosed under the Act continued to grow in 2018, increasing by 19,131 employees, or 14.5%. A large portion of the increase is attributable to the Broader Public Sector, which specifically saw an increase of 17,792 employees disclosed, or 15.4% in 2018.

In addition, the data shows that the number of employees earning more than $100,000 at the agencies that make up Ontario Health has grown from 138 in 2003 to 1,469 in 2018, a 964.5% increase.

Between 2003 and 2018, average salaries of all employees in the public sector, including those making less than $100,000, increased by 48.1%. By 2017, the average private sector worker earned $16,049 less than the average Ontario public sector employee. This income disparity has steadily grown since 2003 and the average private sector Ontario worker’s salary in 2017 is now 33.6% lower than the salary for the average Ontario public sector employee.

The 2018 data is available in a downloadable, machine-readable, sortable, searchable table format on, making it transparent and accessible to the people of Ontario. Every disclosure dating back to 1996 is also available in accessible, downloadable, sortable formats.

The Treasury Board Secretariat has paused all pending compensation adjustments for public sector leaders, and all pending broader public sector executive compensation increases, while a full review takes place. Fair and sustainable compensation costs are a key component of the provincial government’s plan to ensure value for money, direct tax dollars towards front line services, and restore sustainability in the province’s finances.

More than half of government expenses go towards wages.

All the gory details can be found HERE.

Correction: In an earlier edition of this story we said the list was introduced by Bob Rae when he was Premier.  It was introduced by Mike Harris in 1966.

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