Kirsty Williams AM this week voted against the huge £10,000 pay rise for Assembly Members.
Despite urging all parties in the Assembly to join forces to fight the pay rise, the Welsh Liberal Democrats were the only party to vote against the rise. The Tories, Labour and Plaid all voted in support of the increase.
On Wednesday Assembly Members were asked to vote on the Assembly Commission’s Budget which is set to rise by around £1.1m. This huge increase in the budget is, in part, required to pay for the salary hike proposed for AMs by the Remuneration Board.
Assembly Members’ £54,000 pay is proposed to increase to £64,000 in May 2016. This 18% rise will cost taxpayers around £700,000 more per year.
Kirsty Williams, AM for Brecon and Radnorshire said:
“A £10,000 pay increase is completely unacceptable and that is why I voted against it.
“I wouldn’t be able to look my constituents in the eye knowing that I didn’t properly fight against these plans.
“It’s outrageous that, at time when public sector workers have had their salaries either frozen or rise only slightly, politicians could be getting a salary increase of 18%.
“By voting the Commission’s budget down, we would have sent a powerful message to the new Remuneration Board to think again on these proposals. I’m hugely disappointed that we ended up being the only party to vote against the rise.
“The excuses from the other parties about why they had to vote to give themselves a pay rise simply don’t wash. The Welsh Liberal Democrats will continue to campaign against this unfair and unnecessary pay rise.”