Australian politicans who have been sucessfully elected to parliament (state and federal?) are awarded an endless pension. The amount of the pension is determined by the rate of payment they received as members of a parliament.

Quote: “In the 1997-98 fiscal year, Australian taxpayers shelled out $349,332 in retirement perks to Malcolm Fraser who served as our prime minister over 16 years ago. That’s not counting a large lump sum he received in superannuation. Fraser’s lifetime perks include a fully-staffed office, unlimited free first-class air travel round the country and access to a car and driver 24 hours a day. He spent $109,907 on limousine hire in 1997-98, including one 15-hour rental that cost taxpayers $1174. All former prime ministers who have served since 1966 are entitled to the same perks.

Former prime ministers are accorded special generosity. In two months following his elections loss in 1996, Paul Keating billed the taxpayer close to $94,000 for perks to aid his transition into private life. According to a government document released under the Freedom of Information Act, in the 68 days following his election defeat, Keating, a millionaire business consultant, spent $47,855 on travel along for himself, his wife and staff.

In his first year out of office, up until July 1997, Keating billed the taxpayer more than $620,000. This included $l56,602 for chauffeured limousines.

Serving prime ministers get other privileges. With the backing of their department, they can approve other MPs’ special requests.

On February 11, 1997, the federal Opposition asked John Howard in parliament whether he had supported an upgrade for one of Senator Mal Colston’s staff members shortly before Colston was to cast a crucial vote on the part-privatisation of communications giant Telstra. Acting on his department’s advice, Howard agreed to the upgrade. “Any suggestion of bought votes is absolute garbage,” he said. Nevertheless, he got Colston’s vote.

Ex-premiers also receive special perks. Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett introduced a deal to award long-serving ex-premiers, including himself when he retired, with lifetime use of a car and driver, an office, two full-time staff and 12 first-class domestic return air fares each year.

Particularly costly to taxpayers is the use of official cars by MPs. The most recent federal Department of Finance and Administration annual report shows that VIP transport for politicians, ex-politicians and High Court judges cost us well over $14 million in the 1997-98 fiscal year.”

See: http://www.multiline.com.au/~johnm/perks.htm

Back in 2006 some examples of South Australian political attitude towards their own perks.

Quote “South Australian state MPs elected in 2006 or later are now entitled to a 9 per cent super payout based on their parliamentary salaries of $129,000 a year.

Other jurisdictions, including NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and the Northern Territory also have a 9 per cent scheme for new MPs and, according to individual government spokespeople, none have any plans for change.

Senator Xenophon said the solution was to raise super to 15 per cent for everybody.

Premier Mike Rann said yesterday he supported the super increase, and was not worried about the backlash from public servants facing job cuts.

“Our system has always been linked but set at a lower rate than the federal MPs,” he said. “There was an anomaly.”

The planned changes in South Australia have bipartisan support, but have been met with outrage by the Public Sector Association and the South Australian Council of Social Service, who argue it is not the time for politicians’ to improve their benefits when the state is facing severe budget cutbacks.”

See: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/mps-need-to-feel-pain-on-super-xenophon/story-fn59niix-1225911610419

And just to really put it in perspective…

Quote “TAXPAYERS face an estimated $18 million pension bill to support nearly two dozen MPs bowing out at this election. There are 20 MPs retiring and another three Senators who are not recontesting their seats and whose terms expire next July.

While pensioners have to survive on about $640 a fortnight, politicians receive pensions worth about twice the average wage.

They include Liberal MP David Hawker, who recently enjoyed a taxpayer-funded trip to Mongolia and Bhutan, who’ll receive about $120,000 a year.

Outgoing Finance Minister and Member for Melbourne Lindsay Tanner, 54, will get $111,000 a year, while ACT Labor MP Bob McMullan hits the jackpot with nearly $130,000 a year.

Victorian Liberal Fran Bailey walks away with an annual pension of about $116,000.

Another Victorian, the outgoing Member for Kooyong Petro Georgiou, will receive $91,000 a year.

MPs can opt to take half their entitlement in a lump sum, receiving 10 years’ worth in one hit. Those who do so continue to receive a half-pension until death.

Labor received a potentially explosive review of politicians’ entitlements prior to the election but failed to release it.”

See: http://www.perthnow.com.au/news/election2010/revealed-retiring-mps-hit-massive-18-million-pension-jackpot/story-fn616huc-1225894369570

I think its time to stop what I consider to be a blatent ripoff. Politicians tend to be fairly well off prior to their proposed representation. I’m quite happy to allow a generous income to any politician who is without their own means of income in their old age.

I just dont see why Australian taxpayers should foot the bill for endless pensions to those X politicians who are wealthy. What I am suggesting is a means test for retired politicans. I do not see why this shouldnt be done. The politicians have proposed and imposed similar legislation on the public.














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