Top bosses at Transport for London have shared a bonus pot worth almost £2.5m according to the agency’s latest draft accounts.
The bonuses were awarded for the financial years 2010/11 and 2011/12 but were paid last year subject to TfL’s performance during the Olympic games.
The accounts show that the TfL boss Sir Peter Hendy, who has caused headlines recently after claiming thousands of pounds in expenses for taxis, magazine subscriptions and coffee mugs, was awarded £319,000 in bonuses.
That sum would cover almost the entire cost of a New Bus for London which TfL previously said will cost an average of £354,500.
In total Sir Peter took home more £652,452, up from his 2011/12 salary of £331,175.
Another big earner was Managing Director of Surface Transport Leon Daniels who earned £328,448 including bonuses. Despite the generous pay packet, earlier this year Mr Daniels claimed £3 on expenses for a train ticket.
Over the period covered by the bonuses passengers have endured a series of above inflation fare increases, defended by both the Mayor and TfL as being necessary to safeguard services and investment.
However TfL has defended the bonuses, insisting the management team played a key role in delivering a successful Olympics.
Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson DBE, Chair of TfL’s Remuneration Committee, said: “Based on this impressive level of performance and delivery, the Remuneration Committee decided it was right that the deferred performance awards for the two years before the Games should be paid in full to the Commissioner and Chief Officers.”
The London Assembly’s Green party group have questioned the size of Sir Peter’s total renumeration which they say is “40 times the London Living Wage.”
Assembly Member Jenny Jones said: “Peter Hendy and his team did a fantastic job with the Olympics. But the Mayor and the London Assembly have been clear that huge pay gaps are bad for society. The Mayor should be trying to reduce the gulf between senior managers the staff who run our buses, trains and roads.
“Research has shown that more equal societies are generally happier and healthier with less violent crime. We can’t afford not to reduce the pay gap in this divided city.”
The overall level of bonuses has also been criticised by the Assembly Labour group.
Transport Spokesperson, Val Shawcross AM, said: “TfL’s bonus pot of £2.5million will come as a surprise to Londoners who have been forced to pay through the nose just to get to work. We’ve had five years of inflation busting fare rises under Boris Johnson and now we find out that TfL has paid out huge bonuses. They may have been agreed by a committee but it is still shocking.”
Publication of the of the draft report coincided with the release of a report by City Hall’s Conservative group setting out measures to reduce TfL’s costs. Measures include reducing the size of employer contributions to pensions and ending the award of free travelcards to staff.
Earlier this year TfL confirmed that all chief officers were issued with a free Oyster and that all but one had also taken up a nominee card for a spouse or household member.
Conservative AM Richard Tracey said: “TfL senior management should face the same reduction of pension benefits as their staff, and it is only right they contribute towards bringing down the costs of running the organisation to help lighten the burden on the fare payer and secure the future of investment in infrastructure”
Details of the bonuses were published on the same day the Government is expected to reduce to TfL’s overall funding package as part of its Comprehensive Spending Review.