On Monday and with the Trades Union Congress (TUC) in full swing we revealed <[link removed]> that theaverage remuneration of the 30 union bosseson more than £100,000 per year was£144,168in 2018. This is anincrease of £12,970from the previous year. These bosses often denounce private sector pay but Frances O’Grady, general secretary of the TUC, received£167,604in total remuneration.
Union bosses weren't the only ones enjoying generous pay packets. Public sector trade union officials were paidat least £85.9 million for trade union facility timeduties. Facility time is paid time off during working hours for trade union representatives to carry out union duties.
Unions that often cause misery for commuters (notably the RMT), receive substantially more each year in direct taxpayer subsidy. In 2017/18net government support to the rail industry was £6.4 billion. Politicians should be taking a stand against militant unions who want to rip off taxpayers for every penny they can get by calling for devastating tax hikes and spending surges the country simply can't afford.
On Friday our team visited Bristol to campaign against the introduction of a workplace parking levy <[link removed]> (WPL). Nottingham introduced one in 2012, charging businesses with 11 or more staff parking spaces, £415 per space, per year! We firmly oppose another stealth tax being introduced in Bristol and our Lose The Levy <[link removed]> campaign proved immensely popular with locals.
We visited shops and businesses to draw attention to the campaign with many displaying our Lose The Levy posters in their windows. Even local musicians backed our campaign as they belted out "Lose The Levy" to passing shoppers on Gloucester Road. We also garnered the support of Bristol City councillor and leader of the opposition Mark Weston who firmly opposes the levy.
A tax on employees parking their cars at work is the last thing Bristolians need or want. The workplace parking levy is nothing more than a stealthy way for the council to raise revenue at the expense of taxpayers. We are calling on all mayoral candidates to back our campaign and find alternative ways to improve the city's transport infrastructure and air quality.
Click here to sign the petition against a Bristol workplace parking levy <[link removed]>
TaxPayers' Alliance in the news
Shooting down the red barons
As well as receiving excellent coverage in The Times <[link removed]>and Daily Express <[link removed]>, our research director Duncan Simpson spoke to Julia Hartley-Brewer about the Trade Union Rich List. Duncan told Julia that trade union bosses are receiving salaries much bigger than the workers they claim to represent. At the same time, these union fat cats hypocritically denounce high pay in the private sector. Click here to listen to a clip from the interview. <[link removed]>
MoD spends £100k a day transporting top brass
The Sun has revealed that Ministry of Defence (MoD) spent £40 million "on taxis, hire cars and private motors for top brass and civil servants" between April 2018 and March 2019. Asked for his reaction, our policy analyst Jeremy Hutton said, "If taxpayers are to take arguments for increased defence funding seriously, the ministry needs to prove it is the lean fighting machine British taxpayers deserve."
The recent government spending review promised an extra £750 million in funding for policing and TPA volunteer Bradley Goodwin examined how best to spend the money. <[link removed]> Whilst the public are very supportive of the extra money for the force it is vital that the money is not wasted and focussed primarily on the frontline. He writes:
"The public won’t support police forces spending money to keep police officers off our streets. Last year the Metropolitan Police spent an eye-watering £4.62m flying its staff overseas <[link removed]>. All this while the Mayor of London has bemoaned that the Government’s tight purse strings have left the Met helpless against the violent crime-wave that has befallen London."
And there's more... "The Met Police decided to waste an extra £10m last year for 10,000 police officers to find out what colour their personalities were. <[link removed]> This, according to the Met, was part of 'leadership training' for the officers that took up 50,000 working days in total."
So the message is clear, the money must go to bobbies on the beat, not frivolous nonsense that does nothing to improve law and order.
Sadly last week's good news of NHS savings to the tune of £300 million <[link removed]> were short-lived. The Times has revealed that NHS chiefs paid £450,000 transporting paper patient records in taxis over the past five years <[link removed]>. Reporter David McCann writes:
"NHS Ayrshire and Arran spent almost £450,000 on private hire vehicles because it held patients’ individual records on paper until last year. The organisation told The Sunday Times that it had since implemented an electronic method, which had significantly reduced the need to transfer physical records."
Responding to this shocking waste of money, our political director James Roberts said, "Taxpayers expect the health service to access the latest technologies, medicines and clinical innovations to get better outcomes for patients and value for money for the public purse."
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TaxPayers' Alliance is a trading name of The TaxPayers' Alliance Limited, a company incorporated in England & Wales under company registration no. 04873888 and whose registered office is at 55 Tufton Street, London SW1P 3QL.