Politicians will no longer be able to set their own salaries and allowances under legislation introduced into the Parliament today by the Andrews Labor Government.
The Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal and Improving Parliamentary Standards Bill 2017 will overhaul Victoria’s member allowance system and ensure Parliamentary standards are in line with community expectations and current professional practices.
The Bill will establish the Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal so that politicians no longer set their own salaries and allowances, and will help bring Victoria into line with other jurisdictions.
The Tribunal will review the existing salary and allowances for MPs, and will set the value of the Electorate Office and Communications Budget. The Tribunal’s decisions will be effective from beginning of the next Parliament.
The Tribunal will also support a Compliance Officer to hear and determine appeals about alleged misuse of funds.
The Bill also reforms existing legislation including revising the code of conduct for MPs, increasing the ability for the recovery of payments claimed in breach of the rules, and imposes a 25 per cent penalty on allowances that are misused or claimed inappropriately.
This Bill builds on the work of the Labor Government to clean-up Parliamentary allowances and entitlements, including banning MPs representing metropolitan electorates from claiming the second residence allowance, stopping claims for spousal overseas travel and restricting the use of commercial travel allowances.
Quotes attributable to Special Minister of State Gavin Jennings
“The current system is out of date, inadequate and needs a complete overhaul. These reforms provide a modern framework that will help to restore public confidence in our Parliament.”
“MPs should not be able to determine their own pay and with an Independent Remuneration Tribunal we’re ensuring just that.”
“Whether it’s giving the Auditor-General follow the dollar powers, banning taxpayer funded party political advertising or giving IBAC more teeth, we’re boosting transparency and putting in place the highest standards.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020