21 NOVEMBER 2019
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
In the wake of Wellington City Councillors voting for a 28 per cent increase in their base salaries, the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is questioning Iona Pannett’s decision to take a second salary.
Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Iona Pannett is engaged in an extraordinary case of double-dipping. She’s paid by ratepayers for the full-time job of being a City Councillor, while also collecting a second sizeable salary as CEO of Birthright NZ.”
“Ratepayers forking out $111,000 for Cr Pannett’s full-time salary should expect her to be engaged in the role, not moonlighting for 30 hours a week running a nationwide NGO.”
A Wellington City Councillor is generally expected to work 30-50 hours per week. The Taxpayers’ Union has been informed that Cr Pannett spends around 30 hours as Birthright CEO.
“To make things worse, Birthright is largely taxpayer-funded, meaning Cr Pannett drinks from two public gravy pots at once.”
“As for the latest pay hike at Wellington City Council, it casts doubt on the Remuneration Authority’s fiscal sense. If the authority is willing to reward a heavily-indebted council with large pay rises, how can we trust it to determine MP salaries?”
The Prime Minister gave the Authority the charge of determining MP salaries in August this year.