Magazine article Public Finance

Battle Lines Are Drawn as Town Hall Staff Reject 2.2% Pay Offer

Magazine article Public Finance

Battle Lines Are Drawn as Town Hall Staff Reject 2.2% Pay Offer

Article excerpt

Local government employers and unions were heading for confrontation over pay this week after unions rejected a 2.2% offer as a 'slap in the face'.

Unions representing 1.4 million council workers had submitted a claim for a 6% rise or an extra 50p an hour. They met the employers' side for the first stage of talks on March 19, as new figures revealed the consumer price index had risen from 2.2% to 2.5% in February.

The talks came a week after the government's insistence that public sector pay rises should be capped at 2% was reiterated in the Budget.

Roger Phillips, vice-chair of the employers' side, said the 'key aspect' of the 2.2% offer was 'to make sure that any pay settlement is affordable to the taxpayer and councils, while at the same time making sure that local government continues to be an attractive place to work'.

But Unison head of local government Heather Wakefield said: 'A 2. …

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