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Police pay rise contributed to Govt’s $22m current account overspend

Last year’s police pay award caused the Ministry of Labour, Home Affairs and Housing to overspend by $2.3 million, according to supplementary estimates tabled in the House of Assembly.

Government gave officers a retroactive 1.8 percent pay increase on salaries for 2009/10, and a 2.4 percent payment for 2010/11, as it ended its long-running dispute with Bermuda Police Association in March last year.

It also agreed to make pension payments on officers’ total earnings, as well as tying pay rises to the rate of inflation until 2013.

Supplementary estimates tabled on Wednesday show the police pay award contributed towards a current account overspend of $22.6 million across six Government Ministries for 2010/11.

This included a $5.1 million expenditure on substitutes and para-educators in the Education Department, and $1.3 million in overtime and operational costs in public transport.

Other current account overspends were: $914,000 in legal aid in the Ministry of Justice; $9.9 million for the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital subsidy and $534,000 in portability claims in the Ministry of Health; and $2.3 million in operational costs in the Ministry of Works and Engineering.

In addition, the estimates reveal a capital account overspend of $883,000, of which $483,000 was on the central laboratory in the Ministry of Health.

Other capital development overspends were: $129,000 in airport offices; $36,000 in minor works at the airport; $59,000 in public transport stores buildings and $174,000 in housing initiatives.

The total current and capital account supplementary estimate for 2010/11, tabled on Wednesday, is $23.5 million. Of that, $7.6 million is considered a technical supplementary, meaning it can be balanced by underspending in other areas. Government now seeks approval from MPs for the remaining $15.9 million.

MPs approved overspends of nearly $52 million for 2011/12 on Wednesday night.

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Published March 09, 2012 at 8:33 am (Updated March 09, 2012 at 8:32 am)

Police pay rise contributed to Govt’s $22m current account overspend

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