Saturday, November 26, 2022

Blogpost: Mr Perrin has concerns over MP’s pay

Blogspot: A Word in Your Ear from Mr Perrin.

Money! Money! Money!

Does your heart bleed for these “poorly” paid MPs struggling on a current salary of £66.396p.a plus expenses who need an increase of 11% [£7,600] to survive? Their current salary is already more than double [2.25] than that of the average full-time worker.
Or, like me, are you sickened by MPs wringing their hands in anguish proclaiming the increase is being “forced” upon them and they, “reluctantly”, are obliged to accept it.

However, a survey earlier this year by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority [IPSA] found more than two thirds of MPs felt they were underpaid, the average suggested rate being £86,250p.a. It is interesting to note the majority of Tory MPs wanted £96,740, Lib Dems £78,361 and Labour £77,322. A fifth of MPs questioned said they deserved £95,000 or more.

How often have we been told by MPs that they are not in the job for the money? I think the IPSA survey suggests otherwise and the claim that they are motivated only by a sense of duty and service is nothing short of hypocrisy.

It is claimed that it is vital that MPs pay is high enough to recruit the right sort of person. Judging by the events of recent years, such as the expenses scandal, it would seem the higher the salary and expenses the more likely the greedy candidate will be attracted. Tory Boris Johnson believes “greed is good”. I doubt many of his colleagues would disagree with him.

MPs are aggrieved that they are paid less than senior civil servants, senior executives in local government and some head teachers. They overlook the fact that such people do “work” for their money, whilst MPs seem to spend most of their time sitting around shouting at each other like unruly children. Perhaps it would be more appropriate, if they truly believed their worth is comparable, rather than seeking to raise their own salary they should reduce the salary of the senior civil servant, senior local government executives and head teachers to that of their own.

It is reported that Tory MP David Ruffley said he was “minded” to accept the pay rise if there were tough curbs on perks to balance it. He needs to be made aware of the fact that millions of people work for far less money than he gets without the addition of perks, they pay their own travel costs and pay for their meals from their own pockets, not at the expense of the tax payer.

I find it offensive that an MP considers that what he/she does is worth eight times more than a worker such as a refuse collector [dustman]. I do not subscribe to the idea that everybody should be paid the same but I do believe that the worth of a refuse collector should be more fairly recognised when compared to the worth of an MP.

Tory MP Sir Peter Bottomley is reported to have pointed out the dilemma facing MPs: “The only way they could overturn this [pay rise] is to defy their leaders and pass a law saying IPSA is abolished or ignored. That’s impractical, given the public interest of setting up IPSA. So I think we’re stuck.”

I politely suggest to all MPs they get themselves “unstuck” and in the public interest pass a law to do both i.e. abolish and ignore IPSA.

This scandalous pay rise is not just a huge slap in the face to workers who have endured wage decreases since the 2010 general election and a 1% restriction to future pay increases in the public sector; it is a viscous kick in the groin.

11 COMMENTS

  1. My view is that those in top positions within the public sector(excluding MPs) are paid far too highly in the first place. Council CEOs, hospital consultants, NHS managers, top headteachers, local government department heads etc should all have their pay dragged down. The idea of paying out 100k plus salaries to these groups is ridiculous, especially when it is the taxpayer funding it. If such people want to live the high life I suggest they take their ‘skills’ into the private sector.

    As for MPs pay, I do think 66k pa is too low in comparison to their public sector co workers. I would increase it 70k pa whilst dragging down other salaries.

  2. It’s ironic that, not so long ago, people were clamouring for decisions on pay being taken out of MP’s hands and given to an independent body to decide. So, that’s what happened and now people are moaning that they have got it wrong. I disagree, I think they have got it right, MP’s do deserve to be paid more. What is unfortunate is the timing of the announcement of the increase, they could and perhaps should have postponed the decision for another year.

    Is an MP worth more than a dustman (or should that be dustperson?)? Absolutely, it’s silly to think otherwise although I will change my mind when a dustman is appointed to run the treasury!

    If we want top quality people to stand for election we have to offer a salary that is worth all the grief that comes with being an MP and which is enough to lure them away from a well paid job in the private and public sectors, 66K is not enough.

  3. gray64

    Personally I think MPs in general aren’t worth anything, and productively wise I think you get more from your Dustman then an MP, and Dustman don’t fiddle their expenses and don’t claim for their fuel bills or their second houses, and have a closer relationship with their customers,

  4. Superman, would you like to try running the country on no pay? Or how about the pay of a dustman? Whilst I am sure there are some bright dustmen out there I am equally sure they wouldn’t want to be an MP on a Dustman’s wage. You have to be realistic about these things!

    I actually agree that there are a fair few MP’s not worth a light but there are also some very hard working MP’s worth every penny. In the end, if your MP is rubbish and not worth anything, you have the ability to vote for someone else come election day. Too many people moan like blazes about their MP being useless and yet, come polling day, will vote for their favourite Party regardless of whether or not their candidate is hopeless. Mind you, saying that, our County of Essex is rather good at booting out rubbish MP’s.

  5. I personally voted between Labour and until lately UKIP, the reason i will not be giving UKIP a second look is because of its use of ex BNP members, I personally feel this country has come a long way since the days of the BNP, UKIP seems to think differently, back to MPs salaries I think you make some excellent points but the acid test is when have they taken a pay reduction. Never?
    Current salary £66.396p that would be the absolute minimum most are already on £88,000 thousand and rising to £105,000 at ministerial level plus expenses, plus second house living allowance, plus family employed up to£ 30,000 and in some cases more, fuel bills paid for, subsidised meals and drink at Parliament plus travel allowance they are really having it hard
    And when you consider some run their own companies or have second jobs or advise companies at boardroom level it all adds up to a lot of money,
    why haven’t we in place an organisation such as [IPSA) for nurses and doctors and essential key working people, who would then have the opportunity to say I didn’t really want this pay rise it is being forced on me

  6. gray64 – I think you are attempting to misrepresent my meaning with regard to MPs and refuse collectors. I did not suggest that a dustman/person should be paid the same as an MP, the point I was making was are MPs worth EIGHT times more? The job of a refuse collector is essential as was illustrated some years ago in the 1970s with the so called “Winter of Discontent” when rubbish was left to pile up in the streets causing a serious health and safety issue. The MPs who run the Treasury e.g. the Chancellor are already paid considerably more than a backbench MP. In fact the Country is run by a Cabinet of Ministers consisting of about 20 or so MPs and then there are a number of opposition shadow ministers who are also paid more. That leaves more than 600 backbench MPs who do not actually run the Country and are in parliament to represent the interests of their constituency provided it does not conflict with their own political Party interests. It is the pay of the 600 or more backbenchers, together with their expenses, that I consider offensive.
    Finally, would you care to elucidate on “all the grief that comes with being an MP”?

  7. So in a nutshell grasping greedy individuals with no concern for the ordinary working man and woman, I think that sums up most MPs

  8. Mr Perrin, There may well be 600 MP’s that are not actually running the country but I would rather have 600 MP’s with the potential to run the country than 600 sub-standard MP’s. OK, I appreciate that of that 600 there are quite a lot that are sub-standard but that is why I think the pay should be higher to encourage better quality people to run in the first place.

    Do I think that they are worth eight times more than a dustman? Yes, I think I do on the whole.

    As for the grief, I refer, in the main, to the media spotlight that falls on MP’s these days. It is, I imagine, difficult to live a life constantly under scrutiny where every mistake is magnified and you have to be guarded about every word said and careful about every person met. That alone must be worth a few extra quid.

  9. gray64 – I get the impression that you may be a parliamentary candidate with an eye on a prosperous future or, if not you, then maybe a member of your family or someone you know.
    Regarding the grief. Do you have the same sympathy and concern for celebrities such as overpaid footballers?
    I am inclined to the view that politicians inflict a lot more grief on the disadvantaged, such as the disabled, mentally ill, the low paid and the unemployed, or plebs as some politicians regard the general public.
    It is disingenuous to compare the grief you say the MPs suffer with that inflicted by MPs on others. I know where my sympathies lie and I suspect many would agree with me.

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