Yesterday we posted on the Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg’s statement that there was ‘no proposal on the table’ over regional pay for public servants, including civil servants. His precise words, as reported by the BBC, were “There is going to be no regional pay system. That is not going to happen.”
Unfortunately it looks like he forgot to tell his own Minister Francis Maude at the Cabinet Office. Today the Guardian reports that:
David Cameron is facing a complete breakdown in relations with his mandarins as a secret blueprint to break up the civil service is revealed today.
The plans put the country’s 434,000 civil servants into four geographical pay zones, with those living in the south-west, on the south coast, Wales, much of the Midlands and the north-east earning least. Those in inner and outer London will be highest paid, followed by civil servants working in a corridor stretching from Bristol to the Thames estuary, and those in pay “hotspots” in Manchester and Birmingham.
How’s that for ‘no proposal on the table’?
The fact is wherever you live if you are a public servant you will be adversely affected by the proposals and for those in poorly paid areas the plans will act as a sledgehammer to the whole economies of local areas. As the Income Data Service’s economist Alastair Hatchett has shown the government’s regional pay proposal are based on utterly spurious arguments.
When even Senior Civil Servants resign in protests against ill-conceived plans you know things have reached a new level of ‘austerity madness’.
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