politics

No10 hits out over 2.7% MPs' pay rise – but won't say if Boris Johnson will turn it down


The Prime Minister’s official spokesman repeatedly said ‘we would expect restraint’ amid plans for a boost to £81,932-a-year salaries for MPs

No10 did not comment on whether Boris Johnson would accept a pay rise himself
No10 did not comment on whether Boris Johnson would accept a pay rise himself

Downing Street today hit out over plans for a 2.7% pay rise for MPs – but refused to say if Boris Johnson will turn it down.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman repeatedly said “we would expect restraint” after plans for a boost to £81,932-a-year salaries for parliamentarians.

MPs’ pay is set by IPSA, the independent watchdog set up in the wake of the MPs’ expenses scandal.

While a 2.7% rise on April 1 could well be below inflation, it would be worth around £2,000 on the same day energy bills soar for millions of families.

It would also come at the same time as a National Insurance hike on workers.







MPs pay is regulated by an independent watchdog after the parliamentary expenses scandal
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Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The PM’s official spokesman said: “As you know this is a decision for IPSA.

“They are independent of Government and they haven’t set out any proposals yet which I’ve seen.

“I would say that would we would expect restraint on matters like this given current circumstances but beyond that I think it is right that we let IPSA set out the proposals as an independent body.”

Asked if the PM wouldn’t accept a pay rise himself, the spokesman replied: “I’m simply saying they haven’t set out any detail yet so I wouldn’t wish to comment while that independent process is taking place.

“Beyond that we would expect to see restraint on these issues.”

Labour leader Keir Starmer said: “I think that MPs do not need a pay rise and we should all be saying that we don’t need that pay rise and it shouldn’t go ahead.

“The mechanism is independent but I think it’s for me, as Leader of the Opposition, to say that I do not think we should have that pay rise.”







Labour leader Keir Starmer said a pay rise should not go ahead
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PA)

IPSA is expected to make a decision on MPs’ pay for 2022/23 soon.

The parliamentary pay watchdog scrapped plans to give MPs a £3,000 pay rise in November 2020, which would have taken their salaries to £85,291 in April last year.

The proposed 4.1% rise came at a time of wage freezes for public sector workers, sparking a major backlash.

Confirming the u-turn at the time, Ipsa interim chair Richard Lloyd told MPs: “The unprecedented impact of the Covid pandemic has had an unexpected, but different, effect on public and private sector earnings.

“It is clear that applying the forthcoming official statistic for public-sector earnings growth would result in a salary increase for MPs that would be inconsistent with the wider economic data and would not reflect the reality that many constituents are facing this year.”

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