NBN Co's Mike Kaiser gets $450k salary

NBN Co's Mike Kaiser gets $450k salary

Summary: The salary of Mike Kaiser, the National Broadband Network Company's government relations and external affairs chief, has been outed by a senate motion started by Shadow Communications Minister Nick Minchin yesterday.


The salary of Mike Kaiser, the National Broadband Network Company's government relations and external affairs chief, has been outed by a senate motion started by Shadow Communications Minister Nick Minchin yesterday.

Kaiser will earn $450,000 a year. He is currently leading Bligh's camp but will start work with NBN Co on 1 December. He served in the Queensland parliament until 2001 when he resigned after admitting during the Shepherdson inquiry to involvement in vote rigging in Labor Party ballots in the 1980s.

Minchin was staggered by the amount, pointing out that Kaiser was getting $100,000 more than the Prime Minister at $340,000.

"It is absolutely outrageous that a spin doctor for Labor's NBN Co is being paid $450,000 per annum by Australian taxpayers to promote a company that generates no revenue, has no customers and provides no services to anybody," Minchin said in a statement.

"The Rudd Government is spending taxpayers' money on this shell of a company with reckless abandon. Most Australians would be shocked that their taxes are being used to pay these extraordinary salaries to employees of this new government entity," Minchin said. "The $43 billion extravaganza that is Labor's NBN is becoming more scandalous by the day."

Communications Minister Stephen Conroy's office said the remuneration was in line with market rates. "It is consistent with NBN Co's remuneration approach and the relativity of different roles at NBN and market benchmarking," the office said. "NBN Co advise that the salary is consistent with equivalent jobs in other companies."

NBN Co CEO Mike Quigley's salary sits at $1.95 million a year while NBN Co board members rake in $90,000 each.

Minchin also asked whether there were communications between the government and the NBN Co prior to the appointment, to find out if there had been preferential treatment.

Conroy's office said that there were communications, but they were not controversial. "As is normal and appropriate, the government was aware of the appointment prior to its announcement. The government is confident all these communications were entirely appropriate and proper," it said. "The decision to appoint Mr Kaiser as principal government relations and external affairs was an independent decision taken by NBN Co, not by the government."

Topics: NBN, Broadband, Government AU

Suzanne Tindal

About Suzanne Tindal

Suzanne Tindal cut her teeth at ZDNet.com.au as the site's telecommunications reporter, a role that saw her break some of the biggest stories associated with the National Broadband Network process. She then turned her attention to all matters in government and corporate ICT circles. Now she's taking on the whole gamut as news editor for the site.

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  • nothing left

    By the time they finish with all the appointments to the nbn co there will be nothing left over to build the damn thing, oh well the idea was nice I suppose
  • We should rename Rudd's Australia

    Dodge City
  • You ain't seen nothing yet

    Eight years to go.
  • Check your facts first.

    This is tabloid stuff considering you guys got the domain name $$ wrong.

    You might want to check facts first. I think they call that journalism !!
  • The power of love.

    Clearly Mr. Minchin doubts the capacity of Labor to repatriate this once lost lamb.

    I, on the other hand, see this appointment as evidence of Labor's outstanding success in rehabilitating this vote rigging bovver boy. They have doubtless used these many years drilling him in the disciplines of democracy and ethics and now we can all bear the fruit.

    To see him now apply his skills to the highest democratic ends and flourish as the binding agent between the Government and it's telco brings a tear to the eye for so (so) many reasons.
  • Save your breath.

    Not sure what you're all worried about. He may take home $100K before McKinsey tells the Gov't this can't be done commercially.
  • NEWS FLAS!!!

    More Taxpayers Dollars to be wasted on the NBN!!

    Taxpayers should be outaged!

    This KRUDD Government is the most wasteful Government in History! This is only the tip of the Iceberg when it comes to the NBN!!
  • cut the biatchin - where do i apply

    As a 30 year veteran of the industry who sees this as a massive get off your butt and just deliver something in a project sense how do I apply.

    In WA, NT, Queensland and to a lesser extent SA as part of the approval process for massive resources projects make it mandatory to run fibre for the NBN alongside massive infrstructure work such as pipelines etc.

    Guess what they just happen to be the most sparsely populated and geographically dispersed states where the cost to remote locations will highest.

    NBN then completes the link for the last legs

    No wback to more populated states most of the infrastrucutre is there anyway.

    yes its big and complex and this approach will have problems and all projects do

    "it's time to nut up or shut up"

    Be interesting to see if your editor has a similar problem with the salary as the Centix whingeing
  • re: only take him $100k

    I suspect you will find his contract has a guarantee clause that says if they terminate him early he gets a full years salary in "compensation". What are his skills again??
  • complaints.. what complaints

    mysteriously any web pages expressing discontent about this might soon vanish from the internet