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MPs will see their basic salary increase by £2,212 from April 2022, marking an end to the two-year pay freeze brought on by the pandemic.
The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) announced on Tuesday that MPs would see their pay increase by 2.7% from £81,932 to £84,144 for the 2022-23 year.
It is the first time the independent watchdog has approved a pay rise for MPs since 2020, having frozen salaries in 2021 to the “unprecedented impact” of the pandemic.
Since 2015, the yearly salary hike has typically been set in line with the average increase in pay for public sector employees the previous year, as calculated by the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
Announcing the increase, Richard Lloyd, Ipsa’s Chair, said: “MPs play a vital role in our democracy and this is reflected in their pay.
“It is right that MPs are paid fairly for the responsibility and the unseen work they do helping their constituents, which dramatically increased last year.
“For Parliament to reflect society, it is vital that people from all walks of life can be an MP.”
Labour leader Keir Starmer said last month that he did not feel it was appropriate for MPs to get a 2.7% pay rise amid the growing cost of living crisis.
“I think that MPs do not need a pay rise and we should all be saying we don’t need that pay rise and it shouldn’t go ahead,” he told The Guardian.
“The mechanism is independent but I think it’s for me, as leader of the opposition, to say I do not think we should have that pay rise.”
The Liberal Democrats have also called such a rise “shameful”, while Boris Johnson’s spokesperson said last month that he expected “restraint on matters like this given the current circumstances”.
But many MPs have privately complained about the challenges of setting MP pay, a topic which has attracted considerable scrutiny in the decade since the 2009 expenses scandal.
“You’re already getting the Prime Minister saying restraint should be shown, and Keir Starmer saying MPs shouldn’t get a pay increase, and you get this mutual destruction. It’s like, ‘We can go higher than you on what we think will play well with the public’,” one MP, who did not wish to be named, told The House.
“People want to do this job, but they’ve told me they’re glad they’ve never done it because of the money and the scrutiny you endure.”
Currently, most MPs take home the basic salary of £81,932 salary, with cabinet ministers getting an additional £67,505, a minister of state receiving an extra £31,680, and a parliamentary under-secretary of state £22,475.
Johnson as Prime Minister receives £75,440 on top of his MP salary. Select committee chairs also earn an additional wage of around £15,000 a year.
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