MPs are to get a 10% pay hike to £74,000 despite a 1% cap on the pay of public sector workers. The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) announced the move despite fierce opposition from public sector trade unions and some ministers and MPs.
David Cameron previously claimed the proposals were “unacceptable,” but Downing Street admitted last month the Prime Minister would would not attempt to block the move and would personally accept the money.
The increase has been backdated to May 8 and any MP elected before 2015 will also see an increase to their pensions which are linked to their basic salaries.
Sir Ian Kennedy, the chairman of IPSA, explained the increase was due MPs salaries previously having been supplemented by “an opaque an discredited system of allowances”.
“We have made the necessary break with the past,” he said. “We have created a new and transparent scheme of business costs and expenses (and) introduced a less generous pension scheme, where taxpayers contribute less and MPs make a higher contribution, and scrapped large resettlement payments.
“We have consulted extensively on MPs’ pay, and with today’s decision we have put in place the final element of the package for the new Parliament.”
A number of MPs had submitted written statements to the IPSA consultation, with divided views. Those who were supportive of the increase stressed the IPSA was established as an independent regulator to make difficult decisions which should be respected.
Those opposed to the move referred to the circumstances of many of their constituents in a time of austerity, which made it difficult for them to contemplate such a significant increase.
Conservative MP Tobias Ellwood was supportive of the increase and had stated: “I know I speak for the silent majority (who are not millionaires) to say this increase is well overdue. I hope common sense will prevail and this pay rise will be honoured.”