Alberta MLAs hoping to make big purchases as they await a five per cent pay raise will have to put those plans on hold.
Premier Ed Stelmach, who makes $213,450 a year, said Thursday an automatic cost-of-living-related pay hike will be put on hold as the government continues to tighten its belt due to the economic crisis.
“We had two days of very good meetings with all of our caucus present and we made a number of decisions regarding next year’s budget,” he said. “One is that MLAs will not be taking an increase.”
Stelmach said cabinet ministers, their executive assistants and senior political staffers will also not see a hike in pay. Doctors, health-care professionals, police, teachers and others in the public sector will see increases, Stelmach said.
Scott Hennig, the Alberta director for the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, said the move doesn’t send the right message.
“I think sending the right message would have been to give back the 30 per cent pay hike they’ve passed themselves this past summer and take the five per cent cost of living increase that they would have been given on April 1.”