MPs to get a £3,300 pay rise yet millions are on the bread line
MPs are in line for pay rises of up to £3,300 next year, it has emerged.
Announcing the launch of a consultation on how MPs’ pay should be updated, the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) said any rise should be linked to growth in public sector earnings.
We elect politicians to offer and deliver a vision for our country and a practical plan for our collective future. As summer fades, it’s becoming clear that our government has no vision and no plan for the future of the nation it was elected to protect and strengthen. The irony of the word opposition is expressed in their new mantra stated continuously by the new Labour Leader Sir Keir Starmer “I support the government.”
We the people are being let down on a criminal scale.
This covid crisis has witnessed cronyism to an extent never before seen in modern democratic countries, with billions of pounds being transferred from the public wealth to private hands and all too often with little or no return in promises made to help the economy or combat the crisis. Almost a third of companies receiving coronavirus bailouts from the Bank of England are based in a tax haven or owned by someone living there.
Analysis by TaxWatch UK, a thinktank, found that £4.79 billion in bailout cash has been handed to companies with links to tax havens, or that have been embroiled in financial controversy – close to 30 per cent of the money loaned out under the government’s Covid Corporate Financing Facility.
One company – Baker Hughes, a subsidiary of American giant General Electric – was granted a £600 million loan, despite the fact that its parent company has been sued by HMRC over unpaid taxes dating back 16 years.
Luxury fashion brand Chanel – whose ultimate parent company is based in the Cayman Islands – also received £600 million, as did EasyJet – which is part-owned by a trust based in the Caribbean territory. full story here.
It was telling how the government ignored the unions calls for all NHS workers for a ‘well-deserved’ 15 per cent pay rise or £3,000 for NHS staff in the Covid-19 frontline
“Hundreds of health and social care staff have lost their lives in the continuing battle against Covid-19 which has heightened the deep appreciation that the public has for the NHS and those who work in it.
This public esteem for NHS workers should be reflected by the government which needs to respond by opening pay discussions, but they won’t
Rewarding the Charlatan’s for a job done badly
Now we are rewarding our supposed representatives with yet another pay rise while through parliaments joint mismanagement the people are suffering.
The rise of 4.1% would mean that some MPs would earn an extra £3,359 on top of their salary of £81,932 plus expenses.
MPs are allowed to claim expenses for rent on a second residence or hotel costs if their constituency is outside London and they do not “by virtue of any particular office held, occupy ‘grace and favour’ accommodation in London.”
MPs living in ‘grace and favour’ homes are also essentially receiving “free” accommodation (for example, Theresa May lives rent free in 10 Downing Street by virtue of being Prime Minister.)
Eligible MPs can claim expenses on payments for hotel or rented accommodation. They can also claim for “associated costs” if they own or rent a second property. Associated costs include utility bills, council tax, and the purchase and installation of routine security measures. MPs can’t claim expenses for mortgage payments on second homes.
MPs are to be allowed to claim an extra £10,000 in expenses to help them work from home during the coronavirus epidemic.
According to The Times, the cash can be spent on laptops and printers for MPs and their staff, or to pay for additional electricity, heating and phone bills.
It comes on top of the existing £26,000 a year that MPs can each claim to cover their office costs.
Work travel can be expensed
MPs may also claim for travel costs “which are in support of the MP’s parliamentary functions”. For example, MPs whose constituencies are outside London are allowed to claim for the cost of travelling between their constituency and Westminster.
Some MPs do recognise this unfair pay rise, Zarah Sultana Labour MP said :There are proposals for MPs to get a £3,300 pay rise next year. This would be wrong, particularly at a time when so many working people are struggling. If the pay rise goes ahead, I will donate it to local good causes in Coventry.
There are proposals for MPs to get a £3,300 pay rise next year.— Zarah Sultana MP (@zarahsultana) October 9, 2020
This would be wrong, particularly at a time when so many working people are struggling.
If the pay rise goes ahead, I will donate it to local good causes in Coventry.
The news comes as hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs due to the coronavirus crisis, with concerns that more will follow.
Whilst MPs are getting a substantial pay rise almost 700,000 people have lost jobs and around 500,000 more jobs are expected to be gone by the end of the year within the hospitality sector.
IPSA interim chairman Richard Lloyd said, “Given the huge economic uncertainties arising from the pandemic, we do not think it is right to depart from this approach now.”
The pandemic has exposed how brittle our society is at the extreme ends of the class divide
The wealth of the world’s billionaires has reached a record high during the coronavirus pandemic – despite millions of people continuing to face the prospect of unemployment.
The richest managed to increase their fortunes to record levels between April and July, when the COVID-19 crisis was continuing to escalate.
A report by Swiss bank UBS and accountancy firm PwC covered about 2,000 billionaires and discovered their wealth hit $10.2trn (£7.9trn) in July.
The figure broke the previous record of $8.9trn (£6.9trn) at the end of 2019.
The billionaires had mostly increased their fortunes through betting on the recovery of global stock markets, taking advantage of gains in the technology and healthcare sectors.
Time to break the rigged system
There will, of course, be vigorous, even rancorous, political debates about policies to advance the economy, welfare and wellbeing of our communities. But those debates should at least be forged in the service of a coherent, determined and optimistic plan for national rejuvenation. Our future the so-called ‘great reset’ should include peoples assemblies, where we the people have a say in our own destines the direction of our communities and not leave fate and the future of our children to these Charlatan’s in parliament who have been caught out at the first hurdle in this existential crisis.
Covid-19 is not our destiny. But what comes after will set our course and at that, we cannot leave it to these representatives that have been found wanting.