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Public workers get salary increase in St Vincent

SHERRYLYN CLARKE, [email protected]

Public workers get salary increase in St Vincent

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KINGSTOWN, St Vincent (CMC) – Public servants will benefit from a salary increase of 1.5 per cent which will not be taxed when they are paid this week.
The money is half of the three per cent salary increase owed to them since January 2011.
Half of the amount was paid last year, and on Sunday which was Independence Day, Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves confirmed that the money would be paid this week.
“As our Government has demonstrated repeatedly, we keep our promises solemnly which we make to our people, even though sometimes, now and again, infrequently, circumstances may conspire to cause delays in the delivery of a specific promise,” Gonsalves said as he delivered his Independence Day address.
“Accordingly, in their October pay check next week, all categories of public servants, including daily-paid employees will receive backdated to January the 1, 2011, a one-and-a-half per cent increase in salary, the balance to the heretofore-agreed salary increase,” he said as he addressed the Military Parade at Victoria Park, in Kingstown.
“Our Government has had to find an additional sum in excess of EC$9 million to effect this payment, a worthy accomplishment in these challenging times… and I want you to hear this. This retroactive salary increase is being granted, being made, being delivered tax-free,” he said to cheers from the large crowd.
“By this gesture, the value of the package for the public servants is being increased by a further $1 million. I feel sure that all public servants, teachers, nurses, police officers and the other relevant categories of public employees, including the daily paid will appreciate the especial effort of our Government in delivering on this solemn promise,” said Gonsalves, who is also Minister of Finance.