Anger as civil service bonuses rise 5%

CIVIL Service bonuses for senior officials rose by 5 per cent between 2008 and 2009, official figures have revealed.

Scottish Government statistics showed that staff including senior civil servants received a total of 2,141,199 in bonuses, despite the recession. That compares to the 2,041,734 paid out in 2008 in payments for "performance" and "exceptional contributions". The statistics were revealed by finance secretary John Swinney in response to questions from the Tory MSP John Lamont.

The Conservative said: "These are tough economic times and every penny of taxpayers' money has to be spent wisely. As thousands lose their jobs across Scotland as a result of Labour's recession, and many more have seen their pay cut or frozen, the Scottish Government needs to make sure that it is not one rule for the private sector and another for the public sector.

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"We are all in this together so civil servants should only be rewarded if they deliver more for less, but should not be rewarded as a matter of routine."

But Swinney's spokesman argued that when the 2009 bonus was compared with figures under the previous Labour/Lib Dem administration there had been a drop.

The spokesman said: "The reality is that the figure has fallen under the SNP by one-third since 2006 – the last year of the previous Labour/Liberal administration."