SV requires equal wage growth for politicians and retirees
The Socialist Party (SV) do not understand why the parliamentary politicians will give themselves ten times as high wage growth in monetary terms as an average pensioner gets.
The day after the summer party, the Parliament are discussing the presidency’s proposal for their own wage increase this year.
The proposal has been prepared by an independent payroll commission and entails a salary increase of NOK 21,674 for parliamentary representatives and NOK 38.104 for the prime minister.
By comparison, an average Norwegian retiree this year received an addition of NOK 2,066, equivalent to 0.9 percent.
SV’s spokesman on financial matters used the entire allocated speech time of 30 minutes, before a number of party colleagues – interrupted only by the Conservative Nikolai Astrup – followed up with related speeches.
How long the debate will last remains to be seen. But the audience begins to sense the outline of a Norwegian filibuster variant – known from American politics. At 10 am, Deputy President Øyvind Halleraker pointed to the Parliaments Procedural rules and said he would end the debate if the speakers were not sticking to the matter at hand.
Filibuster is not allowed in the Parliament in Norway, where the representatives’ speech time is limited.
15 cortado a day
SV’s finance policy spokesman, Snorre Valen, has picked up the calculator and found a number of interesting calculations. Among them is that a single pensioner who had NOK 180,000 in income in 2014 has lost NOK 10,700 in under-regulation of pensions since 2013. During the same period, the parliamentary representatives, if the proposal as expected passed Thursday, has increased their salary by NOK 92,023 kroner.
– The increase in Norwegian parliamentary representatives is almost equal to the basic amount of the National Insurance Scheme, aka 1G, Valen says. 1G is NOK 93.634 at present.
Valen also reminds that the parliamentary president, Olemic Thommessen (H), at the Parliament’s closing ceremony last year, stated that the Parliament serves Oslo’s cheapest cortado at NOK16 a cup.
– For the wage increase during the parliamentary term, politicians could buy 5,751 cortado’s. Next year, the Parliamentary President can buy 15 cortado’s every day for his wage increase, explains SV’s bean counter.
Get less than others
The fact that the Parliament refused to handle this year’s pensions settlement is the background for SV’s proposal. As known, pensions are underregulated by 0.75 per cent every year, which weakens purchasing power in years with low salary increase.
– A Parliament who does not bother to take the time to deal with the settlement of social security, should do with the same increase that they think is fair for an average Norwegian retiree, Valen tells NTB.
– Progress Party leader Siv Jensen in January said this to Dagbladet about the Parliament’s plans: “It is completely unmusical that politicians in Parliament will give themselves such good terms.” Does this apply only to pensions? Shouldn’t the Parliament also show moderation when purchasing power goes down and people have to reduce spending? Now FrP has the opportunity to show that they mean business, he emphasizes.
SV actually puts forward three different proposals:
- That the representatives receive the same crown surcharge as an average Norwegian retiree.
- That the representatives get the same percentage growth as an average retiree.
- That the representatives receive the same crown increase as a normal Norwegian full-time employee last year, namely NOK 8,900.
But, rarely, the majority in the Parliament has been further away for SV than this time.
According to the recommendation, pay will be set at NOK 928,602 for parliamentary representatives from May 1st this year, NOK 1,325,358 for members of the Government and 1,631,346 for the Prime Minister and the Parliamentary President.
This means an annual salary growth of 2.4 per cent in 2017, slightly higher than the calculated annual wage growth in both state, municipal and private sectors.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today