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Politics

MPs Have Just Been Given A Pay Rise

Their salary is going up to £74,000, from its current rate of £67,060. And no, they can't reject it.

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MPs are set to receive a wage hike of more than 10% – and the rise will be backdated to 8 May, the first day of the new parliament.

The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), a non-partisan body appointed to regulate MPs pay and expenses following the expenses scandal in 2009, announced the new salary of £74,000 – up from £67,060 – on Thursday.

While many MPs have previously said they would reject any salary increases, they technically can't as it'll automatically be paid into their accounts. A number of the Labour leadership candidates have said they will donate the extra pay to charities and local groups.

The new salary comes as IPSA announced a change in the way MPs are compensated. Along with the salary hike, MPs will receive a "less generous pension", and there will be a variety of cuts to items that they could previously expense.

Under new rules, MPs won't be able to claim expenses on home contents insurance and taxis home from Westminster, except after 11pm. MPs pay will also increase in line with public sector pay – based on figures by the Office for National Statistics – every April.

IPSA has already conducted three consultation exercises since 2012 and has faced backlash from MPs for suggesting an increase in MPs' pay during a period of severe cuts to the budget.

As part of its report, IPSA asked MPs and members of the public for their opinions on a pay rise, and they're well worth a read.

Here's Conservative MP Tobias Elwood in favour of the pay hike.

He says: "I know I speak for the silent majority (who are not millionaires) to say this increase is well overdue... I hope common sense will prevail and this pay rise will be honoured."

IPSA

It wasn't just Conservative MPs who backed the pay rise, but the report said none of the three main parties responded to the report. Instead, individual MPs gave their opinions on the pay rise.

Labour's Gloria De Piero meanwhile is adamantly against the pay rise. "If I were to accept a 10 per cent pay rise I would simply not be able to look the constituents I serve in the eye."

IPSA

Members of the public had pretty strong opinions on the matter too. Kevin Burch told IPSA that better-paid MPs would encourage more "quality people" to consider a career in politics.

Public sector pay had been frozen since 2010, but in his budget last week, chancellor George Osborne announced that public sector pay would be capped at 1%.

Siraj Datoo is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Siraj Datoo at siraj.datoo@buzzfeed.com.

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