PM’s pay tops $152,000 as MPs get big pay hike

Thursday June 20, 2019 Written by Published in National
Prime Minister Henry Puna Prime Minister Henry Puna

A 45 per cent pay rise for MPs, calculated as an average 2.9% a year since their last salary increase in 2006. 


Taxpayers will pay an extra $700,000 a year to meet MPs’ massive salary increase.

The unpopular 45 per cent pay rise was approved by the Executive Council this week and comes into effect on July 1.

The increase will see the prime minister’s salary rise from $105,000 to $152,250, and the deputy prime minister’s earnings increase from $95,000 to $137,750.

Cabinet ministers, the speaker of Parliament and the leader of the opposition, who are sitting on $85,000 each, will have their salaries jump to $123,250.

The remaining MPs’ $50,000 base salaries will increase to $72,500, with additional allowances for those like the deputy speaker with extra responsibilities. The Queen’s Representative, who is paid under the Civil List Act 2005, will also receive a pay rise.

The executive council’s decision was based on the recommendation of a three-member Remuneration Tribunal chaired by Fletcher Melvin.

The tribunal, which also comprised members Antony Will and Makiroa Mitchell-John, took into account the increase in salaries of senior public servants, the consumer price index and the state of the economy over the years before recommending the pay rise.

Opposition leader Tina Browne, whose Democratic Party opposed the 45 per cent pay rise, said her MPs would collect their pay rise – but “use it to assist with their constituency work and obligations”.

“While we do not oppose a review of wages, we do not believe that a 45 per cent hike is justified,” Browne said.

“Everyone in Parliament seem to agree that increase for public servants should be performance-based. So how can one explain the hike for parliamentarians? It cannot possibly be performance-based when Parliament sits an average of eight days a year over the last eight years.

“Public servants get a minimum wage increase of 35 cents (0.01 per cent) increase but MPs get a 45 per cent increase.”

Browne said the Demo’s MPs should have been part of the discussion, claiming but for one meeting with the tribunal, they were conveniently left out of the discussions.

“In a nutshell this government has given themselves (and us by default) a huge pay rise, $200,000 extra for travel, $290,000 for a seventh minister, plus salary and perks for that minister … and they had the nerve to  name the budget as the Budget of Love – more like budget of love of ourselves!”

Deputy prime minister Mark Brown, who initiated the pay rise issue in the April sitting, said it was timely that the MPs have had a review of salary after 15 years. 

“I don’t think anyone would be happy to sit on the same salary for that long.  I am happy that the Remuneration Tribunal took into account a number of factors in recommending the increases which included staying in line with the rate of increase of public service employees over the same period of time,” Brown said.



  • Comment Link Tauta Tere Sunday, 23 June 2019 15:53 posted by Tauta Tere

    This is a big joke, tell me it's not real. How can this be justified when our Victorian MP's receive the same renumeration as your PM. We have a steady economic and probably the best in Australia. Population wise you are no where near a quarter of our tally. We have close to 1million tax payers in Melbourne alone and we can afford to pay the bill. No wonder we seeing more Cook Islands migrating to NZ or Australia.

  • Comment Link Jeff Ginter Saturday, 22 June 2019 03:36 posted by Jeff Ginter

    So said that the people who need a raise get shafted. It always seems to be the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. As God says, the first will be last and the last will be first. May God bless the meek.

  • Comment Link Joseph Elia Friday, 21 June 2019 11:43 posted by Joseph Elia

    It certainly is a large pay increase - rather dodgy one, to say the least. Approved by the so-called executive council for the very people who gave them the job in the first place. Te akaroa.

  • Comment Link Josie Thursday, 20 June 2019 20:52 posted by Josie

    OMG seriously, they get a payrise and also in a government house, while my poor mum a pensioner has been waiting for a house since 2012 when her place got burnt down and was told to wait. All she wanted was just a place so she can live in it and call it home, suffering from stress waiting since then

  • Comment Link Ngavaine John Thursday, 20 June 2019 15:21 posted by Ngavaine John

    Aue eaa rava teia tu akakake i te moni a te Prime Minister e te au mema Paramani, te akaroa tikai i te iti tangata e angaanga pakrari nei for a mere peanuts pay,, I feel for our people who are working so hard especially those who are labouring to make ends meet, what is .01% rise compared to a 45% rise a year, I do t know whether to laugh or cry. I stead I am

  • Comment Link Ana Thursday, 20 June 2019 14:33 posted by Ana

    I am saddened that those who deserve pay rises are ignored or given a pittance of 35 cents pay rise. What can you buy fir 35 cents, so sad.

  • Comment Link Clothilda Mateariki Thursday, 20 June 2019 14:26 posted by Clothilda Mateariki

    How about a pay increase for our nurses who works so hard to look after our sick. How about looking after them. 35 cent compared to 45percent. How can our little island afford that kind of pay rise for the members of parliament

  • Comment Link They should upgrade the upper Tupapa clinic..with the grasses growing on the roof n outside the building is really old ..... Thursday, 20 June 2019 14:14 posted by They should upgrade the upper Tupapa clinic..with the grasses growing on the roof n outside the building is really old .....


  • Comment Link Ngatamaine Ivaiti Thursday, 20 June 2019 11:47 posted by Ngatamaine Ivaiti

    These increases are too much , they should also increase public servants salaries especially those in the supervisory levels and those under them. Kakaro meitaki for next election. Te Atua te aroa all the way from Mangaia

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