1 January 2009

Burning Our Money

How government works and how it spends our money to do so interests me greatly so I like to read the research published by the Taxpayers' Alliance.

The basic premise that we have too much government and that it costs us too much money is one that I agree with.

The TPA's latest report is on public sector pay, something that I have recent first-hand experience of. The local authority that I worked for had a Chief Executive, several Executive Directors and each of these had several Divisional Directors. Below these there were Assistant Directors, Senior Managers and Managers. And, finally, people who actually deliver services.

Some of their key findings are:
  • Average pay in 2008 was £21,413 in the public sector against £20,715 in the private sector. Pay in the public sector was therefore 3.4 per cent higher.
  • Since 2000, pay in the public sector has grown by 37.1 per cent whereas pay in the private sector has grown by 30.5 per cent.
  • In the third quarter of 2008, public sector employment increased by 14,000 whereas private sector employment decreased by 128,000.
  • Public sector staff take more time off work sick. The average public sector worker took nine days off, against less than six days in the private sector.
  • Public sector organisations are still recruiting for a large number of jobs of dubious value, these are non-jobs.

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