Government fails again over salary discount

Another door has closed on the O’Farrell Government’s attempts to avoid paying the full 2.5 per cent salary increase allowed under its own public sector wages policy.

The Government made a second effort in the NSW Parliament for a regulation to modify its public sector wages policy to try to circumvent a full bench decision of the Industrial Relations Commission in June 2013 that public sector workers should receive both a pay rise of 2.5 per cent as well as the Commonwealth mandated superannuation increase of 0.25 per cent; an ALP motion supported by the Greens, Christian Democrats and Shooters Party, however, disallowed the proposed regulation. The Government's latest regulation was almost identical to the one issued in July last year and disallowed by the Upper House last August.

The Government still awaits its appeal to the Supreme Court, sitting as the Court of Appeal, to review the Industrial Relations Commission’s June 2013 decision.

Should the Industrial Relations Commission’s decision prevail in the Supreme Court, not only will the increases be back-dated to the commencement of all state-based awards (for example schools, Corrective Services and AMES) as well as enterprise agreements (TAFE) it will also apply to those who have separated (for example, retired) between the commencement of the new award/enterprise agreement and the finalisation of the legal proceedings. In this circumstance, members who have retired and are in the older superannuation schemes would have their exit salary varied and their retirement benefits adjusted as a result.