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House of Commons
Session 2000-01
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Delegated Legislation Committee Debates

Salary of the Information Commissioner

Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation

Thursday 15 March 2001

[Mr. John McWilliam in the Chair]

Salary of the Information Commissioner

4.30 pm

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department (Mr. Mike O'Brien): I beg to move,

    That the Committee has considered the Salary of the Information Commissioner.

I welcome you to the Chair, Mr. McWilliam; I trust that under your wise chairmanship we will make speedy progress.

On 30 January 2001, the Freedom of Information Act 2000 gave the data protection commissioner the new title of Information Commissioner. Since that date, she has had responsibility for both data protection and freedom of information. In recognition of that larger role, we propose to increase the commissioner's salary from its current yearly rate of £68,212 to £85,000.

Since 1996, the commissioner's salary has been uprated annually in line with the average percentage increase of the mid-point of the nine senior civil service pay bands. That is the model used to set the pay of various other statutory office holders, and, of course, of Members of Parliament. In accordance with paragraph 3(2)(c) to schedule 5 to the Data Protection Act 1998, the provision provides for that arrangement to continue, and for the commissioner's salary to be uprated automatically on that basis. I commend the motion to the Committee.

4.31 pm

Mr. Nick Hawkins (Surrey Heath): I join the Minister's welcome to you as our Chairman, Mr. McWilliam. We have no objection to the provision. The Information Commissioner's role is important, and it is appropriate that those who have serious responsibilities, as the commissioner will have, should have commensurate reward for taking them on. We therefore do not oppose the motion.

Question put and agreed to.


    That the Committee has considered the Salary of the Information Commissioner.

        Committee rose at twenty-nine minutes to Five o'clock.

The following Members attended the Committee:
McWilliam, Mr. John (Chairman)
Davies, Mr. Geraint
Gibson, Dr.
Hall, Mr. Mike
Hawkins, Mr.
Khabra, Mr.
Miller, Mr.
O'Brien, Mr. Mike
Ruddock, Joan
Stinchcombe, Mr.
Thomas, Mr. Gareth R.


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Prepared 15 March 2001