Surrey school trustees claim $23,500 in expenses

Chairperson's tab lower than last year, according to district's latest Statement of Financial Information.

Members of Surrey’s Board of Education filed more than $23,500 in expense claims last year, a slight increase from the year prior.

The expense claims are included in the school district’s Statement of Financial Information (SOFI) for the year ended June 2012, released last week.

Board chairperson Laurae McNally, who has topped the expense list in recent years, claimed less than last year, spending $6,260, compared with $7,170 in 2010-2011.

Vice-chairperson Shawn Wilson was the second-highest spender at $5,583 – about the same amount as he expensed the year before.

Trustee Reni Masi claimed $4,014, up from the $2,814, while Trustee Terry Allen spent $2,654, Trustee Laurie Larsen claimed $1,732 and Trustee Pam Glass submitted a tab of $912.

Trustee Charlene Dobie, who was elected in November 2011, spent $2,078 in her first seven months in office. Ijaz Chatta was unseated in the same election, claiming $287 for the six months before he left.

The expenses are in addition to the board’s combined wages of $213,100. Board members are paid $29,800 per year, with the chair and vice-chair receiving an additional $3,000 and $1,500, respectively.

The Surrey School District spent a total of about $432.5 million on employee salaries – including those of senior management, principals and teachers – from June 2011 to June 2012. The SOFI report lists the salaries for the more than 2,000 employees who earn more than $75,000 per year in the district, which total $172 million. Another $261.3 million is spent on salaries of employees who make less than $75,000 annually.

Surrey paid out about $169 million for goods and services last year – $52 million of which went to the B.C. Pension Corporation, with the rest paid to a variety of companies covering everything from heating to busing to computer equipment.

The complete Statement of Financial Information can be found at http://bit.ly/XK9mQJ

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