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Remuneration package for Members of the Sixth LegCo
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     The Chief Executive in Council has decided to accept the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Remuneration for Members of the Executive Council and the Legislature, and Officials under the Political Appointment System of the HKSAR (the Independent Commission) on the remuneration package for Members of the Sixth Legislative Council (LegCo), which includes raising the annual Office Operation Expenses Reimbursement (OOER) and Setting up and Information Technology Expenses Reimbursement (SUITER).

     A Government spokesman said today (March 21) that the Independent Commission proposed to maintain LegCo Members' monthly remuneration at the existing level, currently at $93,040, which is subject to annual price adjustment in accordance with the Consumer Price Index (C) (CPI(C)). It also proposed that the amount of medical allowance, currently at $32,400 per annum and also subject to annual price adjustment in accordance with CPI(C), be maintained at existing level, but allowing the surplus from a year to roll over to the following year until the end of a LegCo term to provide more flexibility on its utilisation.

     To assist LegCo Members in discharging their duties, the Independent Commission recommended an increase of the OOER lump sum by 7 per cent, from the current $2,385,510 to $2,552,500 per annum, in addition to the annual price adjustment in accordance with CPI(C), and maintaining the arrangement for the surplus from a year's OOER to roll over to the following year until the end of a LegCo term.

     To encourage the use of information technology to provide more efficient services to their constituents, the Independent Commission also proposed that the SUITER be increased by 50 per cent, from the current $250,000 to $375,000 per term, and from $175,000 to $262,500 per term for those who have claimed setting up expenses in the previous term.

     "In conducting the review for the Sixth LegCo, the Independent Commission had adopted a holistic approach and taken into account a host of factors before arriving at its recommended remuneration package for Members of the Sixth LegCo," the spokesman said.

     Factors that the Independent Commission had considered include:

(a) the constitutional role and functions of LegCo Members;
(b) the objective to enable a broad spectrum of quality individuals from different sectors of the community to serve the public in the capacity of LegCo Members vis-j-vis other pursuits;
(c) the provision of a remuneration package that is adequate for LegCo Members to discharge their core duties;
(d) the proposal of the LegCo Subcommittee on Members' Remuneration and Operating Expenses Reimbursement submitted in May last year;
(e) views of LegCo Members' assistants;
(f) utilisation rates of the allowances currently available to Members;
(g) the economic situation of Hong Kong; and
(h) market rates of salaries and rentals.

     The Independent Commission recommended that all the aforementioned proposals should take effect from the Sixth LegCo, due to begin in October 2016.

     The Independent Commission also reviewed other components of the remuneration package, including the monthly remuneration for the LegCo President, the Deputy to the President and LegCo Members who are also serving on the Executive Council, the 15 per cent end-of-service gratuity, Entertainment and Travelling Expenses Reimbursement (ETER), the President's additional entertainment allowance and Winding Up Expenses Reimbursement. The Independent Commission considered the current levels of these provisions to be adequate. It therefore recommended that the present levels of these provisions, together with the current annual price adjustment mechanism applicable to monthly remuneration, medical allowance, OOER, ETER and the President's additional entertainment allowance should continue to apply for the Sixth LegCo.

     In summary, for the Sixth LegCo, the remuneration package for a LegCo Member will comprise:
(a) remuneration at $93,040 per month (see Note 1);
(b) 15 per cent end-of-service gratuity, totalling at around $670,000;
(c) medical allowance at $32,400 per annum; and
(d) Entertainment and Travelling Expenses Reimbursement at $203,860 per annum (see Note 2).
     
     "Save for annual price adjustment to be made, total funding for the remuneration package for Members of the Sixth LegCo is estimated to be about $1.19 billion per term, or about $16.9 million per Member per term. The additional funding required to implement the recommendations arising from this review will be about $56 million per term," the spokesman added.

     The Independent Commission is chaired by Mr Nicky Lo and comprises Ms Kelly Chan, Mr Andrew Fung, Professor Leonard Cheng, Ms Lau Ka-shi and Ms Elaine Lo as members. It advises the Chief Executive, among others, on the remuneration package for LegCo Members. The Independent Commission started a comprehensive review of the remuneration package for Members of the Sixth LegCo in May 2015, about 18 months before the start of the new LegCo term.

     The Independent Commission's Report on the Review of Remuneration Package for Members of the Sixth Legislative Council is available at www.admwing.gov.hk/pdf/IC%20Report_Eng.pdf .

Note 1: Monthly remuneration of the LegCo President and the President's Deputy are fixed at 200 per cent and 150 per cent of the remuneration for their fellow LegCo Members respectively.

Note 2: The LegCo President receives an additional entertainment allowance at $204,060 per annum.

Ends/Monday, March 21, 2016
Issued at HKT 15:00

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