Lincoln MP Karl McCartney in favour of Commons pay rise
Lincoln MP Karl McCartney says the £65,738 a year MPs earn is not enough for the work they do.
Mr McCartney said that the salary does not adequately reflect the hours they put in and their wide-ranging roles.
He voiced his opinion after it emerged MPs want a 32 per cent pay rise.
One hundred members polled by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority said salaries should rise to an average of £86,250.
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And more than a third believe they deserve final salary pensions in the anonymous study.
The poll of 100 MPs found that, on average, Conservatives wanted salaries of £96,740, Liberal Democrats thought they should get £78,361 and Labour members suggested £75,091.
One-fifth said their pay should be £95,000 or more, and 69 per cent of respondents said there weren’t paid enough.
MPs agreed to extend a pay freeze into this year after rejecting a 1 per cent rise in 2011.
The survey results have been adjusted to reflect the make-up of the Commons and were published after consultation on pay and pensions.
Mr McCartney said MPs should not be insulated from the economic challenges facing Britain, but said the wages they earn are the equivalent of “a London tube driver on overtime”.
He also stressed that MPs’ pension contribution rates have risen by 1.86 per cent to 13.85 per cent and pay has been frozen since 2010.
Mr McCartney said: “This salary is far from consummate with the role that many MPs from all political sides dutifully undertake, and indeed there are a large number of allowances that MPs are able to claim, but do not, due no doubt to various pressures, particularly from an unreasonable and unrealistic media and certain sectors of the public.
“Politics should be open to all and surely you need the best people to run the country.
“If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. There are altruistic reasons for entering politics but if you have a family and responsibilities, would you negate those to become and MP?
“I’m not saying we need to be paid massive amounts, but we cannot make it so that it’s in the negative.
“MPs need to regain the public’s respect and trust and it is right that many of those who abused that prior to 2010 are now no longer elected.”
Mr McCartney says the cost of IPSA, the independent organisation which monitors and controls MPs’ expenses, pay and pensions costs, has more than doubled to £7.5 million-plus a year, while MPs and their staff spend too much time form filling.
He suggests a new system where MPs get a monthly allowance to cover travel, accommodation and subsistence plus a salary, policed by the taxman, while expenses remain for staff and office costs.
Sleaford and North Hykeham MP Stephen Phillips said: “I do agree that successive Governments have ducked the issues of MPs’ pay, but I have personally voted against any increase in my salary until the economy recovers, as well as to hand over the setting of
my salary in the future to
IPSA as the independent regulator.
“I therefore now have no say in how much I am paid.”
Gainsborough MP Edward Leigh failed to respond to the Echo’s requests for a comment.
Matthew Sinclair, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said that hiking politicians’ wages at a time of pay freezes, benefit caps and necessary spending cuts would be completely unpalatable to taxpayers.
“To do so would suggest that there is one rule for MPs and another for the rest of the country,” he said.
“Most people clearly think that an MP’s salary is currently about right.”