Increase in the salary of elected officials | Quebec wants to correct its controversial law

(Quebec) After having faced controversy over a 30% salary increase in the spring, the CAQ deputies want to renounce the additional indexation planned for this year, which could reach 4.3%. To achieve this, the government plans to reopen the law it rushed through just a few months ago.

At great speed, without any consultation in a parliamentary committee, the deputies of the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) passed Bill 24 last June, supported by the Liberal Party of Quebec (PLQ). This legislative text, which came into force on June 7, provides:

  • that the basic annual compensation for elected officials increases from $101,561 to $131,766 (an increase of 30% or $30,000);
  • that this salary be indexed “by any amount equivalent to any increase in the maximum of the salary scale of a holder of a higher job […] level 4”.

It must be understood that this increase in the salary of holders of a higher job – managers of organizations – generally corresponds to the salary increase granted to civil service executives, which is itself harmonized with that of civil servants and others. state employees. The government’s salary offer for these workers as part of the renewal of collective agreements is 4.6% for this year, not including the lump sum of $1,000.

However, CAQ elected officials recently decided in caucus that they did not want to receive the indexation of their salary this year, contrary to what the law provides. Montreal station Cogeco 98.5 FM reported this decision Thursday.

“Since the annual compensation of members of the National Assembly has just been revised, and this has been effective since last April, our caucus has made the decision not to be indexed this year,” declared in writing Thursday the office of the chief government whip.

“What hypocrisy”

The announcement of this decision comes as the Legault government is going through a difficult time this fall in Quebec: it lost the riding of Jean-Talon, then resurrected its project for a third highway link before removing the tram project from the hands of the mayor of Quebec and to announce in controversy an expenditure of five to seven million to host two preparatory games of the Los Angeles Kings at the Videotron Center.

“What hypocrisy on the part of the CAQ! », Exclaimed Thursday the parliamentary leader of Québec solidaire (QS), Alexandre Leduc.

“After voting in favor of the $30,000 salary increase, the CAQ is trying to bring public opinion back on its side by refusing indexation which is nothing new and comes back every year! In June, [le gouvernement] had, however, refused Québec solidaire’s proposal to cancel the automatic indexation of MPs’ salaries until 2026. We precisely wanted to avoid a double salary increase for MPs,” he declared.

On the side of the Liberals, who supported the CAQ bill last June, we affirm that “discussions will take place in caucus soon” regarding the indexation planned for this year.

“We learned of the CAQ’s position in the media, so we will take the time to discuss it. Furthermore, this seems to demonstrate that the government is trying to make amends by trying at all costs to win back popular opinion in the midst of negotiations with the public sector,” said the Liberal Party of Quebec on Thursday.

The Parti Québécois (PQ) for its part refused to comment.

The highest paid provincial elected officials

By adopting Bill 24 last June, the Legault government reappointed Quebec elected officials as the highest paid provincial deputies in Canada. The majority of elected officials (115 out of 125) also receive remuneration higher than their new basic compensation of $131,766, since they occupy an additional function. This additional compensation has also been increased by 30%.

In June, QS and the PQ voted against the bill aimed at increasing the salaries of elected officials. Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois’ troops have promised to redistribute all or part of their $30,000 salary increase to causes that are dear to them, as well as to disclose the amount of donations.

Paul St-Pierre Plamondon and the PQ deputies for their part affirmed that they would limit their salary increase to the average of the increases that will be granted to public sector workers and that they would remit the difference to organizations.

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