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Execs get almost $4 million after 700 jobs axed

ESSENTIAL Energy's chief executive Vince Graham has rejected criticism by the Electrical Trades Union about almost $4 million paid to executives just months after the company cut 700 jobs.

The company's annual report, released this month, shows 10 executives received a total of almost $4 million, with base wages of $3,522,747, while seven pocketed a share of $303,910 in bonuses.

Chief operating officer Gary Humphries took home the most generous package, with his wage and bonuses totalling $544,731, in addition to super and benefits.

Electrical Trades Union secretary Steve Butler slammed Essential Energy's "culture of executive greed".

"At the same time apprentice programs were being axed, regional depots closed, 700 jobs cut, and employees were being forced to use up leave entitlements, management were pocketing such huge salaries," he said.

"The community was told Essential Energy had no choice but to slash jobs and services because of the financial challenges ... those cuts were only necessary because the Baird Government and the individual executives have been lining their pockets."

Mr Graham called for transparency by unions on their own executive remuneration.

He said there was a two-year wage freeze in place for all Essential Energy employees, and encouraged the union to do the same.

"It is time unions took their own advice and published their own executive salary movements including their non-salary entitlements," he said.

Mr Graham said the last salary increase for managers and award employees was 2.5% in July 2014.


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