10 Pol­lie pay­day on way


A NEW tri­bunal that will de­cide on pay rises for our state MPs will cost $8.5 mil­lion to set up and run.

State Bud­get pa­pers show that $1.3 mil­lion will be spent be­fore June 30 on the in­de­pen­dent Re­mu­ner­a­tion Tri­bunal, and a fur­ther $7.2 mil­lion is al­lo­cated over the fol­low­ing four years.

The Sun­day Her­ald Sun re­vealed last year that state MPs were set to get a gen­er­ous pay rise worth tens of thou­sands of dol­lars once the new sys­tem is set up, be­cause there would be a work-value re­view likely to re­sult in a favourable boost.

It was also re­vealed ear­lier this year that politi­cians qui­etly pock­eted a 5.3 per cent pay rise last year, worth $8400 to back­benchers and $19,000 for Premier Daniel An­drews, be­cause their salaries are cur­rently linked to av­er­age wage growth.

A back­bencher is now paid about $168,526 a year, plus ex­penses, while the Premier is on $377,624.

The plan to cre­ate a new re­mu­ner­a­tion tri­bunal came af­ter rort­ing by for­mer Speaker Telmo Lan­guiller and deputy speaker Don Nardella was un­cov­ered.

Mr Lan­guiller had claimed he was liv­ing in Queen­scliff to get an al­lowance worth al­most $40,000 a year — which he later paid back.

Mr Nardella claimed he was liv­ing in an Ocean Grove car­a­van park to get the same al­lowance, and was even­tu­ally forced to $98,000.

The body will set pay scales as well as in­ves­ti­gate mis­use of par­lia­men­tary en­ti­tle­ments.

At the time, Spe­cial Min­is­ter of State Gavin Jen­nings said MP pay would be as­sessed against other pro­fes­sions and “stop MPs de­ter­min­ing their own salaries and en­sure only le­git­i­mate work ex­penses can be claimed”.

Greens MP Sam Hib­bins said he feared the tri­bunal could lead to a mas­sive pay hike for Vic­to­rian mem­bers. “Our con­cern is that politi­cians will get a big pay rise which is what hap­pened when a sim­i­lar plan was en­acted fed­er­ally.”

In Canberra, MPs saw $45,000 in­creases when a sim­i­lar plan was brought in but stripped of con­tro­ver­sial perks like gold pass travel.

Mr Hib­bins also ques­tioned why the state govern­ment had dragged its feet on bring­ing the new leg­is­la­tion re­gard­ing the tri­bunal to a vote in the Vic­to­rian Par­lia­ment, but had al­ready ploughed money into set­ting up the new body.

Govern­ment spokesman Chris Piper said Vic­to­ria was be­ing brought in to line with other Aus­tralian ju­ris­dic­tions.

“The in­de­pen­dent Re­mu­ner­a­tion Tri­bunal will en­sure MPs no longer de­ter­mine their own pay,’’ he said. pay back about

BLACKING out in the back of a limo on his way to play­ing one of the world’s most iconic mu­sic venues was the wake-up call Con­rad Sewell needed.

It was De­cem­ber 2015 and the now 30-year-old was shar­ing the bill at New York’s Madi­son Square Gar­den with Calvin Har­ris, Fifth Har­mony, The Weeknd, Se­lena Gomez and Shawn Men­des.

“I blacked out be­fore I played the Gar­den,” Sewell said. “It was the opportunity of a life­time. I’d go out on an all-night ben­der and I’m on the road to Madi­son Square Gar­den and they are try­ing to sober me up be­fore I play what is a dream of mine. That was when I was like, ‘What the f--- are you do­ing?’”

Sewell has de­tailed the low­est of lows that will be re­flected two tracks to be re­leased this month. It has been two years since his last re­lease. Pegged as a star on the rise thanks to break­through hits

and Sewell was hand-picked for the all-star line-up.

“I grew up singing in pubs so I would drink and I could sing through it, but no one does that any more,” Sewell said.

“You’ve got to wake up and do promo the next morn­ing. Rock ‘n’ roll ain’t what it used to be.

“Or it can be what it used to be — but you aren’t go­ing to last long, and I want to last long.”

Paul Mc­Cart­ney and wife Nancy Shev­ell yes­ter­day. SIR Paul Mc­Cart­ney paid trib­ute to his par­ents af­ter a cer­e­mony mak­ing him a Com­pan­ion of Hon­our at Buck­ing­ham Palace.

The ex-Bea­tle said in a writ­ten state­ment that he saw the award “as a huge hon­our for me and my fam­ily, and I think of how proud my Liver­pool mum and dad would have been to see this”.

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