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Minister must clarify SOE bonus comments

March 27, 2009
Media Release

Minister must clarify SOE bonus comments

State Services Minister Simon Power needs to clarify which State Owned Enterprise bonuses he wants to cut, says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.

The EPMU is concerned that productivity payments to workers in the SOEs are being lined up to be cut – a situation that would see EPMU members at SOEs such as New Zealand Post and Solid Energy lose out.

EPMU national secretary Andrew Little says the Minister should distinguish between regular payments made to front-line staff related to output, and payments which relate to a business’s overall performance which senior managers are responsible for.

“For example, at New Zealand Post our members participate in Business Unit Improvement Programmes that reward staff for making measurable productivity and efficiency improvements in their business unit.

“Similarly, at Solid Energy any payments our members receive above their basic pay are based on meeting production targets – literally how much coal they are able to dig out of the ground.

“These performance payments for front-line staff have been negotiated in our members’ collective agreements and play a crucial role in improving the productivity performance of State Owned Enterprises.

“The Minister is correct to scrutinise senior management bonuses to make sure they relate to actual business performance and align with the commendable executive pay restraint being shown in some quarters.

“We’re calling on the Minister to clarify for our members and the public whether he’s targeting front-line workers’ productivity pay or just excessive management bonuses.”

The EPMU represents 46,000 workers including thousands at SOEs including NZ Post, Solid Energy and major power companies.

ENDS

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