Monday, August 20, 2018


MP's are rightly well-paid, as a defence against corruption. But their high pay and the fact that they get a pay increase year after year no matter what they do puts them on a different planet from most New Zealanders, and is frankly offensive when they are trying to deny pay rises to others in our society. So now, Jacinda Ardern has said "enough" and frozen their pay:

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced the Government will freeze MPs' salaries and allowances for a year.

The Remuneration Authority recently recommended an incease of about three percent for the coming year, which Ms Ardern said did not feel right.

Urgent legislation will have to be passed in order for the freeze to take effect before the Remuneration Authority's increase comes into force.

This will be a popular decision, because MPs have worked hard to make themselves despised by the public. But its also not unjustified. As I noted above, they are literally not in the same boat as the rest of us, and that's something they need to look long and hard at. As for how they should proceed, indexing their pay to the median wage, so they do no better than everybody else, seems like a good idea. And it sets some solid incentives for them to boost everybody's living standards, rather than just their own.