TfL Bonuses

Questions to the Mayor of London – answered on 2nd August 2022.

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Photo of Keith Prince Keith Prince Conservative

On 30th June the Evening Standard revealed that 597 TfL and Crossrail staff had received six-figure bonuses in 2021/22. Are there any outstanding six-figure bonuses that have yet to be revealed?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

The premise of the Member’s question is incorrect. To clarify, 597 TfL and Crossrail staff received total remuneration of more than £100,000 in 2020/2021, a figure that includes all elements of pay such as basic pay, overtime and voluntary severance, not just bonus payments. In fact, in my time in office the number of TfL staff on a salary of more than £100,000 has dropped by nearly 20%. The past two years have been some of the most difficult in London transport’s history and staff have worked tirelessly to ensure that transport services remain safe, clean and reliable throughout the pandemic, whilst facing significant financial challenges. At the same time, TfL has been working hard to drive down operating costs and become ever more efficient as it supports the economic recovery of the city. Most recently, staff have been working on the entirely avoidable project of attempting to persuade the Government to properly fund London, all the while with little certainty about the future of their roles and the roles of their colleagues.

Given the financial pressures resulting from the pandemic, it was right that TfL suspended performance awards in 2020/21. Following that suspension, TfL implemented a revised performance award arrangement for 2021/22 and 2022/23. Bonuses are part of TfL’s remuneration package and retention strategy, designed to attract and retain highly skilled staff. These staff are providing a vital public service to Londoners, often being lower paid than they could earn in the private sector. This is especially true in the engineering and tech fields where there is a shortfall in the number of specialists required to meet demand. However, since I was first elected, I have been clear that I want to see salary costs for the senior levels of staff brought down. TfL has taken action to control salaries and bonuses in recent years, including by reducing management layers and eliminating duplication to make TfL a more efficient organisation.

I have also been clear with TfL that one-off payments to departing TfL staff must be minimised. These huge departure payments are the legacy of the sky-high salaries and long notice periods agreed under the previous Mayor. All performance awards earned during 2021/22 and 2022/23 will be paid only if TfL reaches financial sustainability by April 2023, with staff needing to still be working for TfL at that point to receive the award. This has been agreed as part of TfL’s funding agreement with the Government.

Photo of Keith Prince Keith Prince Conservative

Thank you, Mr Mayor. That is very helpful. As you will know, Mr Mayor, the Chief Executive of Crossrail left recently. What sort of bonus do you think he can expect?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

I am not sure in relation to the bonus that he makes, but it is worth reminding colleagues that Mark Wild became Chief Executive of Crossrail in 2018, at a time when there was chaos in relation to the plans we inherited from the standalone company. In 2020 TfL took over Crossrail, working with Mark Wild as Chief Executive, and he delivered Crossrail in the first half of 2022, as had been promised when he took over as Chief Executive. I do not know what they are.

Photo of Keith Prince Keith Prince Conservative

Be clear that I am not making any criticism of the work that Mark did. I thought he did a great job, actually, during his time as Chief Executive, and delivered a project that was clearly behind. Can you confirm, Mr Mayor, that when Mr Wild receives his bonuses that will be a decision that was one which you took and that you have agreed?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

Just to be clear, do you mean a severance payment or a bonus? I have agreed no bonus, so I am not sure what he means.

Photo of Keith Prince Keith Prince Conservative

Let us say any payment.

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

If you bring in a job quicker than would otherwise be the case and you are no longer required, you receive a severance payment, and so I simply do not know what the severance payment would be for Mark Wild. He did leave sooner than would otherwise be the case because we managed to open Crossrail and because the staff in TfL, ostensibly Andy Lord [Chief Operating Officer], have taken over the day-to-day running and we did not require a Chief Executive of Crossrail to carry on doing that job.

Photo of Keith Prince Keith Prince Conservative

Sure. You will let us know, will you, Mr Mayor?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

What normally happens is all severance payments are published in a remuneration report, which is published whenever TfL publishes those.

Photo of Keith Prince Keith Prince Conservative

That is fine, and that is your decision, yes?

Photo of Sadiq Khan Sadiq Khan Mayor of London

I think the remuneration report is published as part of the statement of accounts, which is a TfL Board decision.