On Monday and Tuesday, the Assembly will debate and rush through the “Allowances to Members of the Assembly (Repeal) Bill”. This legislation will tidy up some anomalies on how MLAs get pay rises, and how they can be compensated when they bow out from the Assembly.
Is it just us, or is there no justice in this? When the Finance Minister is sounding dire warnings over cuts and the Executive couldn’t agree on tea or coffee without a row, our esteemed political classes are sorting out how they get paid and how they get compensated.
No doubt there is a valid reason why this is receiving accelerated passage. The legislative equivalent of a laxative, to make things run quickly, is being applied to make sure that the procedures paying MLAs are all agreed well before the 2011 election.
When civil servants, public sector workers and associated private sector suppliers are facing either pay cuts or job losses, perhaps it is time for MLAs to take a good, long, hard look in the mirror. Perhaps it is time to take off their jackets, roll up their sleeves and do some work; some creative thinking and sort the mess out.
Instead they are looking after themselves.