Local resident Katherine Popenuk did some homework on "average" mining salaries. They don't align with Rise Gold's promises.
The following information is extracted from an opinion piece originally published in The Union.
But what about the new jobs?
Rise Gold states we can expect 612 new jobs, 312 of which are directly related to the mine operation. The other 300 are presumed to be increases in our current employment base, in response to the estimated 50 million new dollars being poured into our community.
Two thirds of the 312 mine employees are to be current local residents. The remaining 104 employees, would be the top paid technical and managerial positions. Are any of these highly trained specialized employees already a part of our local community? Or will these positions more likely be outsourced? Will adding 104 new Grass Valley residents really induce a new local spending increase of $50M each year?
Do mine workers really earn $122,000 a year?
When Rise Gold says “average”, they are including all salaries, including the top 1/3 salaried positions in the calculation of that average. This includes the CEO’s anticipated very generous salary. Furthermore, Rise Gold’s estimated worker earnings includes company-paid benefit costs that the employee never sees in their paycheck.
The reality is an entry-level Miner can expect to earn an average total compensation (includes bonus and overtime pay) of $18.55/hour, based on a survey of typical existing salaries. An early career Miner earns $20.26, and an experienced Miner with 10-19 years of experience earns $27.56. (source: payscale.com). Truck drivers, janitors, front load operators, security staff, etc. will all be making the current going rate, with or without a mine.
Do we get to keep the gold? No, we don’t. All of the gold and all of the profits will be leaving Grass Valley. The city of Grass Valley and Nevada County will not be receiving a piece of the gold pie. Any profits will go to the owners and shareholders of Rise Gold.
Katharine Popenuk lives in Grass Valley.