The Remuneration Board met on 4 July 2019. The following is a summary of its discussions and decisions.
Review of the Determination for the Sixth Assembly
The Board’s review of the Determination ahead of the next Assembly is progressing and the majority of the July meeting was spent discussing the different issues arising from the review as outlined below:
The Board considered the responses to the first consultation arising from the review, which focused on the Members’ Travel, Office Costs and Residential Accommodation Expenditure provisions. A summary of the Board’s discussions and decisions following this consultation can be found in its decision letter.
The Board further considered the provisions which fall under part two of its review which focuses on the staffing support allowances contained in the Determination. The Board agreed to issue a consultation on its proposals arising from this part of the review shortly before the summer recess. This consultation has been published and we look forward to hearing your views..
In addition to the issues that are being consulted upon, the Board also discussed the Political Parties Support Allowance and whether any changes were required to it. The Board agreed to further consider this issue at a future meeting.
The Board also undertook further consideration of the issues which form the third part of the review on the Determination’s chapters on Members’ remuneration and support for leaving office . The Board will look at these issues again at its next meeting in September. As noted on the Board’s website, the Board anticipates issuing a consultation on the issues raised in this part of the review during the autumn term.
Members’ Pension Scheme Rules review
The Board has previously discussed whether the Members’ Pension Scheme Rules required reviewing to ensure that they did not fall short on age discrimination requirements for those aged 75 and over. Following further consideration, the Board has agreed to propose some changes to the Scheme Rules. These changes will ensure the Scheme’s compliance with age discrimination requirements as well as provide increased flexibility for Members suffering from severe ill health. The proposals have already been published and can be found here.
The Board considered its Annual Report for 2018-19 and agreed that it should be laid before the Assembly before the summer recess.
The Board was provided with an update on constitutional change in the Assembly. The Board discussed the most recent activity with regards to the Senedd and Elections (Wales) Bill and will continue to monitor developments on the Bill’s passage and whether there is any impact on areas within its remit. The Board also noted the Assembly Commission’s decision not to legislate for a larger institution in time for the Sixth Assembly.
The Board would also wish to put on record its thanks to Rebecca Hardwicke her work in supporting the Board. The Board is very grateful to Rebecca for her support to it and to Members and their staff and wishes her well in her new career.