Saturday, April 14, 2012

DomPost Editorial

The Dominion Post editorial from Friday looks at the issue of mayoral pay rises and the role of the Remuneration Authority. It says:
the authority is also required by statute to take account of prevailing economic conditions. The law recognises that politicians should not dwell in a rarefied atmosphere while those who pay their salaries scrape along beneath them.
The authority's latest determination, scheduled to take effect on July 1, suggests it is in danger of losing sight of one side of the equation. It will take the average increase awarded to the 15 mayors in the lower North Island over the past two years to 9.1 per cent.
I have always found the blinkers on the Remuneration Authority hard to believe. Their inability to take into account the global economic situation is incredible, or if they are taking it into account it asks the question what increases would they be giving in good economic times?

The Authority needs to take a good look at how it sets increases and needs to increase the weight it gives to the current economic climate and the lives of average New Zealanders. Politician's salaries need to be sufficient to attract talented people but if a politician believes they deserve a pay rise when voters are hurting they are failing the public service requirement of their job.

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