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Who’s doing the misleading, Minister?

Judith Collins MP
National Party Welfare Spokeswoman

16 January 2008

Who’s doing the misleading, Minister?

National Party Welfare spokeswoman, Judith Collins, says Ruth Dyson couldn’t possibly believe anyone would accept her justification for MSD spending a fortune on salaries.

“The number of people earning more than $100,000 rose a whopping 546% between 2002 and 2007.

“Ruth Dyson says that’s because MSD’s deputy chief executive roles are ‘easily similar to that of smaller departmental chief executive roles’.

“Surely, all these extra staff cannot realistically fall into the category of deputy chief executive.

“Ms Dyson continues to use the merger with Child, Youth and Family and the Ministry of Youth Development as part of the reason.

“The figures, though, speak for themselves and they tell a very different story. In 2002, 54 MSD staff earned more than $100,000. By June 2006, pre-merger, the number had risen to 244.

“Clearly, that excuse doesn’t wash. It becomes even more implausible when you take into account the number of CYF staff on top-band salaries. In 2002 just 12 CYF staff were collecting $100,000 pay packets but by 2006, again, pre-merger, the number had swelled to 53, an almost 350% increase.

“Ruth Dyson even tries to offer up the excuse that her Ministry has taken on new functions like administering Working For Families.

“Most people get their WFF entitlements through IRD, so connecting WFF to top-dollar salaries at MSD isn’t only lame, it’s misleading.

“There is no acceptable justification for encouraging a bloated bureaucracy at a Ministry which crows about providing budgeting advice for beneficiaries.

“The Minister should be closely examining her own budget.”

ENDS

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