Public Sector Pay

Charles Walker condemns pay increases of up to 20% for quango chiefs.

Mr. Charles Walker (Broxbourne) (Con): When he last met the chief executive of the Audit Commission to discuss levels of public sector pay. [286189]

The Chief Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Liam Byrne)
: I met the chairman of the Audit Commission together with ministerial colleagues yesterday.

Mr. Walker: At a time of private sector pay freezes and public sector pay restraint, is it right that the leaders of our quangos are getting pay increases of up to 20 per cent. or more?

Mr. Byrne
: The principle that must guide the rewards that go to leaders of quangos must be very clear: they must be rewarded only on the basis of their performance on behalf of the public. However, the hon. Gentleman is right to allude to the necessity for public service leaders, no matter what part of the public sector they work in, whether it be the BBC or any other non-departmental public body, to set an example and to show restraint. That is why we have limited pay awards for senior civil servants, judges, senior NHS managers and NDPB chief executives in this financial year to just 1½ per cent.

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