Despite Expenses Scandal, Commons Officials Rewarded with Huge Pay Rises.

August 04, 2009 12:35 PM

Yesterday, the Annual Report of the Commons Administration was released, revealing the generous pay increase given to staff in the last 12 months.  Included in this is Malcolm Jack, Clerk to the House, whose pay shot up nearly 11%- meaning he now earns more than the Prime Minister.  Also of note is Andrew Walker, who was in charge of the Fees Office, and saw his pay rise by 8%.  (The same Fees Office that was accused by some MPs of encouraging them to maximise claims.)  These statistics show some brazen cheek following the involvement of both figures in the MPs’ expenses scandal.  With Speaker Martin chastised and ultimately forced to step down, how can the rewards to Jack and Walker be justified?


 


Even without their failure to control MPs’ expenses, the fact of the matter is we are in a recession and people and businesses all over the country are tightening belts and cutting costs to survive.  Even the often wasteful public sector has limited pay rises to 2% in most areas during this time of austerity.  So why are large raises to parliament staff, which were approved by a senior pay panel, being allowed? It seems that working in the hallowed halls of parliament, so close to many influential figures provides some benefit to these elite of civil servants.  With the eventual expenses scandal on their watch, have these senior figures justified their exuberant pay increases on top of their already generous salaries?


 


It seems this is a case of ‘looking after their own’ by MPs fearful of any future embarrassments or leaks brought by the Commons officials.

Yesterday, the Annual Report of the Commons Administration was released, revealing the generous pay increase given to staff in the last 12 months.  Included in this is Malcolm Jack, Clerk to the House, whose pay shot up nearly 11%- meaning he now earns more than the Prime Minister.  Also of note is Andrew Walker, who was in charge of the Fees Office, and saw his pay rise by 8%.  (The same Fees Office that was accused by some MPs of encouraging them to maximise claims.)  These statistics show some brazen cheek following the involvement of both figures in the MPs’ expenses scandal.  With Speaker Martin chastised and ultimately forced to step down, how can the rewards to Jack and Walker be justified?


 


Even without their failure to control MPs’ expenses, the fact of the matter is we are in a recession and people and businesses all over the country are tightening belts and cutting costs to survive.  Even the often wasteful public sector has limited pay rises to 2% in most areas during this time of austerity.  So why are large raises to parliament staff, which were approved by a senior pay panel, being allowed? It seems that working in the hallowed halls of parliament, so close to many influential figures provides some benefit to these elite of civil servants.  With the eventual expenses scandal on their watch, have these senior figures justified their exuberant pay increases on top of their already generous salaries?


 


It seems this is a case of ‘looking after their own’ by MPs fearful of any future embarrassments or leaks brought by the Commons officials.

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