MP`s 11% pay rise “Now is not the right time” says Deeside MP Mark Tami
The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) the MP`s watchdog, is to go ahead with a proposed 11% pay hike in 2015 despite pressure from David Cameron to “think again”.
The move to increase MP`s salaries from the current level of £66,000 to £74,000 after the general election in 2015 has been met with public outcry.
The chair of Ipsa Sir Ian Kennedy hit back at criticism in an article posted today on Ipsa`s website he said;
‘The reforms we are introducing do not cost the taxpayer a single penny more and come on the back of our already having taken tens of millions out of the cost of politics with the changes we made to the business costs and expenses.
The reforms will see us make cuts to the generous pension scheme and resettlement payments, but make a one-off increase to MPs’ pay to £74,000.
MPs’ pay should rise in 2015, and that its level should be in the range £73,365 – £83,430. In recognition of the current difficult economic circumstances we have set it at the lower end of this range: £74,000, indexed to national average earnings thereafter.’
The point that an 11% increase in wages is seen by many ordinary citizens as unacceptable, regardless of how it is paid for, appears to have been lost on Ipsa`s board.
By comparison figures released by the Welsh Government today show that the average weekly wage in Flintshire has dropped from £518.30 in 2009 to £517.30 in 2012 around -0.3% which only adds fuel to the argument that Ipsa is completely out of touch.
David Cameron told BBC WM:
“This isn’t a final recommendation. They should think again and I very much hope they do. I don’t rule out, and I don’t think anyone rules out, taking action if they don’t modify this proposal.”
Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, told LBC 97.3 radio this morning the hike was “incomprehensible and wholly inappropriate” at a time when rises in the rest of the public sector were limited to 1 per cent.
Labour leader Ed Miliband has also called for it to be dropped.
Sir Ian said that a failure to increase MPs’ pay could result in scandals like the one over parliamentary expenses.
Deeside.com asked Mark Tami MP for Alyn and Deeside for his views on the proposed pay increase, he said;
“The first thing to say is that it comes from an independent body and not MP`s themselves, we did vote on our own pay in the past but this stopped when Ipsa was set up.”
“The irony was that parliament almost always voted for a lower increase than was recommended which resulted in the salary falling behind comparable jobs.”
“If it was down to me I would leave things as they are, now is not the right time to increase pay.”
Will Mr Tami be refusing the rise or handing it to charity? it remains to be seen.
The full package, which will apply after the next general election, is set out in the IPSA report here.
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