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Ministers: Pay

Volume 475: debated on Wednesday 14 May 2008

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) what the percentage increases in (a) pension contributions, (b) salaries and (c) expense allowances of (i) Cabinet Ministers, (ii) Ministers of State and (iii) Parliamentary Under-Secretaries were in each of the last five years; (205020)

(2) what the percentage increases in pension payments to former (a) Cabinet Ministers, (b) Ministers of State and (c) Parliamentary Under-Secretaries were in each of the last 10 years.

I have been asked to reply.

The pension contribution of Members increased from 9 per cent. to 10 per cent. of salary in April 2004 for those opting for one fortieth pension accrual. It remained at 6 per cent. of salary for one fiftieth accrual. These pension contribution rates also apply to ministerial salaries.

Further information on current and historical rates of ministerial salaries and allowances payable to Members is available in the House Library.

The increases in ministerial salaries are given in the following table.

Date of increase

Size of increase (percentage)

1 April 2003

2.25

1 April 2004

2.00

1 April 2005

2.80

1 April 2006

1.00

1 November 2006

0.99

1 April 2007

0.66

There was no difference in the percentage salary increases between Secretaries of State, Ministers of State or Parliamentary Under-Secretaries.

Increases in Allowances

All Secretaries of State, Ministers of State and Parliamentary Under-Secretaries in this House are generally entitled to claim the same allowances as any other Member. The exception is that Ministers who are not provided with an official residence in London in respect of their office are entitled to claim the London supplement. They may claim this alongside the additional costs allowance if they also qualify for that allowance.

As at 1 April each year—Size of increase (percentage)

Allowance

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

Additional costs allowance

2.80

3.50

2.40

4.20

4.00

Bicycle

2.78

170.27

0.00

0.00

0.00

Communications allowance

4.00

Incidental expenses provision

2.80

3.49

2.20

4.40

4.00

London supplement

2.80

59.95

2.40

6.11

3.70

Motorcycle allowance

0.00

0.00

0.00

0.00

Staffing allowance

3.40

8.44

3.80

3.70

3.70

The motor mileage allowance increased by 2.6 per cent. on 1 April 2004. From 1 April 2005 the motor mileage rate was reduced by 30.68 per cent. for the first 10,000 miles, by 56.67 per cent. between 10,001 and 20,000 miles and by 6.02 per cent. for over 20,000 miles. There has been no change to the level of the motor mileage allowance since 1 April 2005.

As for many public pensions, the increases applied each April to pensions in payment under the parliamentary contributory pension fund, in excess of the guaranteed minimum pension, were linked to the increase in the retail prices index as at the previous September. These increases applied to pensions paid to former Cabinet Ministers, Ministers of State and Parliamentary Under-Secretaries. The percentage increases for the last ten years were as follows.

April each year

Increase (percentage)

1999

3.2

2000

1.1

2001

3.3

2002

1.7

2003

1.7

2004

2.8

2005

3.1

2006

2.7

2007

3.6

2008

3.9