The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority has been described as “tin-eared” after it recommended that a £3,300 pay rise for MPs should go ahead while Brits suffer devastating coronavirus cuts.
The Commons watchdog proposed that MPs’ wages should continue to be linked to the average rise for public sector staff as it launched a consultation on salaries.
It is expected to base next year’s pay rise on October’s public sector three-month annual growth figure of 4.1 per cent.
This would mean MPs, including those working at home, would get an extra £3,360 on top of their £81,932 salary.
Richard Lloyd, IPSA’s interim chairman, said: “We carried out a major review of MPs’ pay with consultations in 2012, 2013 and 2015, and technical adjustments in 2018. Given the huge economic uncertainties arising from the pandemic, we do not think it is right to depart from this approach now.”
Jeremy Hutton, policy analyst at the TaxPayers’ Alliance, told The Sun: “IPSA must be tin-eared if it really thinks a pay rise for MPs should be considered this year.”
Nadhim Zahawi, business minister, and Lucy Powell, shadow business minister, both suggested this morning that they would donate the extra money to charity.
MPs were given an extra £10,000 expenses allowance to meet home-working costs for themselves and their staff at the outset of the pandemic. Margaret Ferrier, who recently admitted breaching Covid rules, would be one of those eligible for the pay rise, as would other MPs under investigation for misconduct.
More than 130,000 people signed a petition calling for a U-turn on the IPSA stipend shortly after.