Liepert defends $575K salary of Health Services CEO Stephen Duckett

EDMONTON — Health Minister Ron Liepert is defending the more than half a million dollars in salary that the CEO of Alberta Health Services is getting.

EDMONTON — Health Minister Ron Liepert is defending the more than half a million dollars in salary that the CEO of Alberta Health Services is getting.

Liepert says Stephen Duckett is a bargain, with pay of $575,000 and a potential bonus of $144,000 if the performance objectives are met.

The health minister says Duckett is making half of what the Alberta government paid to each of the CEOs of the previous health authorities in Calgary and Edmonton.

Duckett announced last month that 300 acute-care hospital beds around the province and another 246 at an Edmonton mental hospital will be closed over the next three years to help trim a $1-billion-dollar health deficit.

Alberta Health Services board members are being asked to take a 30 per cent cut in pay.

Conservative Premier Ed Stelmach has said that wages will be frozen for 6,500 senior bureaucrats for and asked teachers, nurses and other government workers to put jobs before raises.”

The wage freeze is expected to save $22 million over two years.

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