Dean Russell on MP pay rise Proposals

Watford MP Dean Russell and Hemel Hempstead MP Sir Mike Penning have shared their views on proposals from the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa), which recommend that MPs’ pay packets should continue to be linked to wage growth in the public sector.

MPs do not set their own salaries, nor do they vote on any such proposals.

Richard Lloyd, Ipsa’s interim chairman, said the body had a statutory duty to review MPs’ pay in the first year of each parliament. Major reviews were carried out in 2012, 2013 and 2015, with technical adjustments in 2018.

Speaking about the proposals, Mr Russell said: “Ipsa is the independent body responsible for overseeing MPs' pay, pensions and expenses so it is not something I have any say or control over. “Nevertheless, I do not think a pay rise is appropriate in the current climate and I will be making this clear to Ipsa.”

Sir Penning felt the proposals “seem really strange”. He added: “I think it is crass at this stage."

Meanwhile, Downing Street announced earlier this week that Boris Johnson has decided to freeze the salaries of Government ministers.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “The Government is only responsible for ministerial salaries. “Ipsa, which is independent of both Government and Parliament, has responsibility for determining MPs’ salaries.

“What I can say to you is that the Prime Minister has decided that at a time of significant pressure on public finances it is only right that ministerial salaries should be frozen.

“This means that Commons ministerial salaries have now remained frozen since 2010 and Lords ministerial salaries will remain frozen at 2019/20 levels.”