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Public Sector: Pay

Volume 481: debated on Monday 27 October 2008

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of differences in treatment of civil servants and other public sector staff in (a) pay rises and (b) the funding of pay progression, with particular reference to the use of recyclable elements to fund such progression. (221509)

Civil service pay decisions are delegated to individual Departments. These pay decisions must fall within the parameters set out in the Treasury's annual Pay Remit Guidance, which includes specific guidance on the recycling of savings back in to the pay bill.

Parameters for the coming year will be set out in the 2009-10 guidance. The objectives of the Remit Process are:

To ensure that increases to pay are affordable within the overall fiscal environment, offer value for money and are consistent with the Bank of England achieving its inflation target of 2 per cent.;

To ensure that levels of pay are set at the amount necessary to recruit and retain staff;

To ensure that pay in the civil service reflects, and is responsive to, the wider public sector and private sector labour market; and

To ensure that pay is fair across the whole of the civil service and not discriminatory.

The precise method of controlling pay differs across the public sector but the Government's public sector pay policy, which includes the civil service, is that pay should:

Reflect the individual labour market position of work forces, particularly the need to recruit and retain staff;

Be consistent with the Bank of England achieving its CPI inflation target of 2 per cent.;

Be affordable for Departments; and

Represent value for money for taxpayers.