Derek Mackay among departing MSPs to be paid £2.2 million in 'golden goodbyes'

Disgraced former finance secretary Derek McKay is among a group of MSPs who will share a pot of taxpayers’ money worth £2.2 million in the form of golden goodbyes as they leave Holyrood.

A total of 43 MSPs – including nine who failed to get re-elected and 34 who chose to step down from frontline politics – will be paid the “resettlement grants” worth at least £32,235 – the equivalent of half a year’s salary,=.

However, those who have served as an MSP for more than six years will get extra pro rata, up to a full year’s salary of £64,470. The first £30,000 is paid out tax free.

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Mr McKay, who was forced to resign over a year ago after it was revealed he had sent hundreds of social media messages to a 16-year-old boy, is among those to receive a payout totalling £53,725. It emerged earlier this year that he has since claimed more than £11,000 in expenses.

Former finance secretary Derek McKay is among MSPs getting a hefty payout.

The grants are handed out to help retiring politicians "with the cost of adjusting to non-parliamentary life".

Former Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson, who is to £323-a-day seat in the House of Lords and recently landed an £85,000-a-year job as a non-executive director of insurer Royal London, is due a grant of £53,375 after ten years as an MSP.

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All of Holyrood’s parties have MSPs who will share in the pay-outs.

Sixteen former SNP MSPs will collect more than £920,000 between them, while 11 former Labour MSPs are together in line for £666,000, and ten former Tory MSPs will share £408,000.

Former Liberal Democrat MSP Mike Rumbles is entitled to a second grant of £32,235 after previously qualifying for £57,600 after he left the Scottish Parliament after losing his seat in 2011, before returning after the 2016 election.

The Taxpayers’ Alliance recently branded the sums “outrageous” and called for the system to be reviewed by the Scottish Government.

After the 2016 election, the equivalent fund paid out to departing MSPs was £2,106,691, and after 2011 it was £2,224,060.

The Scottish Parliament said: "Resettlement grants are paid in accordance with the Scottish Parliamentary Pensions Act (2009)."

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