May 19, 2024

The Queens County Citizen

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How much does culture cost you?

How much does culture cost you?

As soon as I learned that my colleagues at the Bureau of Investigation had developed a tool to trace salaries in the Quebec public service, I rushed to check income in the cultural sector.

I especially wanted to know how these salaries compare to artistes' income. The answer is surprising…

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Arts salaries

“Quebecers are the highest-paid taxpayers in North America, but it's hard for them to know how much civil servants and elected officials have earned with public funds,” my colleagues wrote.

Using a research module developed by the Provincial Bureau of Investigation, I was able to compile from highest to lowest salary.

-Nathalie Verge, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Culture and Communications $232,001

-Mary Collin, Board Member. and CEO Société de Telediffusion du Québec (Tele-Québec) $232,001

-Matthew Lacombe, Member of Parliament for Papineau, Minister of Culture and Communications (CAQ) $230,591

-Eric Bergeron, Assistant Deputy Minister Ministry of Culture and Communications $217,754

-Louis Lantagne, Board Member. and CEO Cultural Business Development Corporation (SODEC) $217,754

-Marc Hervieux, Board Member. and DG Conservatory of Music and Dramatic Art of Quebec $217,754

-Jean-Luc Murray, Board Member. and DG National Museum of Fine Arts of Quebec $217,754

-Stephane La Roche, Board Member. and CEO Musée de la Civilization $217,754

-John Zeppetelli, Board Member. and DG Museum of Contemporary Art of Montreal $217,754

-Marie-Josie Desrochers, Board Member. and CEO Societe de la Place des Arts de Montreal $216,662

-Anne-Marie Jean, Board Member. and CEO Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec $187,521

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– Gayton Morency, Board Member. and CEO Société du Grand Théâtre de Quebec $187,521

-Louise Chamberland, Assistant Deputy Minister Ministry of Culture and Communications $187,521

-Laine Ouellet, member and president Quebec Cultural Heritage Council $169,950

-Michel Bonsaint, UN Quebec Representative for Education, Science and Culture in Paris. Ministry of International Relations and La Francophonie $169,950

– Stephanie Jordan, Assistant Deputy Minister Ministry of Culture and Communications $167,870

-Annie Grand-Maurcel-Brosseau, Assistant Deputy Minister Ministry of Culture and Communications $144,249

-Ann Mundy, Member and VP Quebec Cultural Heritage Council $132,259

Here are the conclusions I came to by looking at the list I compiled: Deputy Minister Nathalie Verge and CEO of Télé-Québec Marie Collin earn more than the Minister. The two highest paid people in the public cultural sector are women. Each year, we pay $3,564,620 in salaries to civil servants and elected officials in Quebec's cultural sector. And ten people earn more than $200,000 in the cultural sector of the Quebec public service.



Archive photo, Stevens LeBlanc

A job that kills hunger

I remind you that the median income of Quebec artists is $15,200. So there are ten people who “run” the cultural sector earning 13 times the average income in the cultural sector.

I leave you with a quote from Godard in this film Contempt: “When I hear the word culture, I reach for my checkbook.”

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