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Sunday, September 07, 2014

MPs to get ten per cent pay rise

Whichever way you look at it, deserved or not, the proposed pay rise for MPs is badly timed.  The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority has announced that MPs’ pay will rise by 10 per cent next year, taking their salaries to £74,000. This at a time when public sector workers are facing minimal rises if they get any at all.

As the Telegraph says the package will include reductions in MPs pensions, which will switch from final salary to “career average” schemes, and cuts to their expenses. In addition resettlement payments for MPs voted out of office, worth tens of thousands of pounds each, will be abolished in favour of modern redundancy deals. Ipsa argues that the package of reforms, including the pay rise, will not add to taxpayers’ costs overall.

It is right that MPs should not determine their own pay and that this be entrusted to an independent body, but really, shouldn't membership of that body require an ability to exercise political sensitivity so that irrespective of the merits of the award, MPs are not seen to be more privileged than other workers?
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