Nieuws - 7 juni 2007

Minister wants clarification on ‘very high’ salaries

The Minister of Agriculture, Gerda Verburg, intends to seek an explanation from the Wageningen UR Supervisory Board about the ‘very high’ salaries of members of the Executive Board, said her spokesperson. President of the Executive Board, Aalt Dijkhuizen, is one of the highest paid managers in the Dutch public sector. Last year his salary costs amounted to 307 thousand euros.

Aalt Dijkhuizen is number 32 in the list of top salaries published by the weekly Intermediair last week. In 2006 he earned thirty percent more than the previous year, partly due to an extra 30 thousand euros for his pension that he received for his re-appointment. In addition, Dijkhuizen was given a 31-thousand-euro bonus for reaching the agreed targets.

The bonus and pension contribution were on top of his regular gross salary of 203 thousand euros. This makes Dijkhuizen's salary about twice as high as that of a professor and considerably higher than the ‘Balkenende norm’ agreed by the current government for public sector salaries.

Wageningen UR also published the salaries of the other two members of the Executive Board. Rector Martin Kropff earned over 215 thousand euros in 2006 and Tijs Breukink 220 thousand. Dijkhuizen was the best paid university manager in the Netherlands last year.