Chair and Member – National Assembly for Wales Remuneration Board
The National Assembly for Wales (Remuneration) Measure 2010 established an independent Remuneration Board to make decisions in respect of all aspects of financial support for Members. The Board’s objectives are to:
• provide Members with a level of remuneration which fairly reflects the complexity and importance of their work as Members and which does not deter, on financial grounds, anyone from seeking election;
• provide Members with adequate resources to enable them to exercise their functions as Members; and
• ensure that public money is spent with probity, accountability, value for money and transparency.
At the start of this Board’s term, it agreed a purpose statement as part of its 2016-2021 strategy:
The Remuneration Board makes independent decisions on the pay and direct support for Assembly Members to attract a wide range of capable and diverse candidates and to enable those elected to do their job effectively, with value for money, for the people of Wales.
The Board’s work is underpinned by a set of clearly defined principles:
• financial support and remuneration for Members should support the strategic purpose of the Assembly and facilitate the work of its Members;
• decisions must be appropriate within the context of Welsh earnings and the wider financial circumstances of Wales;
• the system of financial support for Members must be robust, clear, transparent, sustainable and represent value for money for the taxpayer.
The Board's Role
The role of the Board is to determine:
• the remuneration of Assembly Members (salary and pension);
• the additional remuneration of office holders - for example, the Presiding Officer, Deputy Presiding Officer, Assembly Commissioners, leaders of opposition parties and committee chairs;
• the remuneration of members of the Welsh Government (the First Minister, Welsh Ministers, Deputy Welsh Ministers and the Counsel General);
• financial support for party groups represented in the Assembly;
• arrangements for staff support for Assembly Members, including their remuneration; and
• all other aspects of financial support available to Members, such as office and accommodation costs.
The decisions of the Board are final and not subject to ratification or approval by the Assembly Commission or the National Assembly for Wales.
The Board is supported by a secretariat led by a clerk, provided by the National Assembly Commission.
This section sets out the essential knowledge, experience and personal competencies that are being sought for the new Chair and member of the Remuneration Board. Candidates should provide evidence of the knowledge, experience and competencies they would bring to the role when completing their application.
The general attributes we are seeking are:
• experience of public life and a thorough understanding of the issues surrounding the public debate on standards in public life;
• a thorough understanding of the work of parliamentary bodies and the devolved context and the changing constitutional context both in Wales and the UK;
• an approach that is independent, fair minded, realistic and firm;
• exceptional judgement in dealing with sensitive and high profile matters;
• the track record, presence and personal integrity needed to command the trust and respect of the general public and of Assembly Members across the whole of the Assembly;
• excellent communication and team working skills;
• appreciation of the importance of the environment of equality, sustainability bilingualism and diversity & inclusion in which public bodies in Wales operate;
• the ability to make sound recommendations on the basis of analysis.
In addition, candidates should be able to present evidence of one or more of the following:
• political experience - either directly as an elected politician or by having operated at a senior level in a relevant role;
• specific knowledge and experience of remuneration, pensions or related matters, particularly in relation to public sector pay and including experience of pay review bodies;
• audit or governance experience and qualifications;
• communications, engagement;
• academic, research or public policy experience in a relevant field.
Candidates applying for the position of Chair should also demonstrate that they:
- are an accomplished Chair with a strong understanding of effective governance;
- are able to demonstrate exceptional team building skills;
- are able to provide effective strategic leadership;
- have strong appreciation and understanding of the work of elected politicians; and
- have the personal impact and manner to command widespread respect with the public, Members, Members’ staff and media.
Terms of the appointment
The Independent Remuneration Board is a public appointment made by the National Assembly for Wales Commission. The Board is independent and therefore not accountable to the Assembly in relation to its determinations. It will however be accountable to the Assembly and to the public, through its annual report, for its use of resources on its own activities.
Board members are appointed for a fixed term of five years. A person cannot be appointed as a member of the Board more than twice i.e. appointment can be for a maximum of ten years.
The Board, as a public body, attracts considerable public interest. It is particularly important to ensure that there is no possible conflict of interest between current responsibilities (or previous positions) and the responsibilities of this post. Board members are expected to exercise caution in taking up new responsibilities which could conflict with the interests of the Board and should notify the Chief Executive and Clerk of the Assembly before accepting any new appointment which is offered. Acceptance of an appointment which conflicts with the role as a member of the Board would mean that the appointment would be liable to be terminated.
The current remuneration rate for the Chair is set at £333 per day, and for Board members is £267 per day. Remuneration rates for the Board are currently being revalorized and will be confirmed prior to appointment.
Remuneration is payable in respect of all activity undertaken on behalf of the Board, not just formal meetings.
The number of meetings and workload are likely to vary during the course of an Assembly five-year term. Typically, the Board meets six times a year. The estimated average will be between 10 and 15 days per year for members and 20-25 days for the Chair. Our experience to date suggests that the time commitment would be relatively more demanding towards the latter half of the mandate as the Board would be renewing its Determination for the next Welsh general election due in 2026.
Meetings will normally be held in the Assembly offices in Cardiff Bay.
If you are applying for the position of Chair or member or both, applications must include:
- Submission of a detailed CV.
- A covering letter explaining why this appointment interests you and how you meet the essential skills detailed in the person specification. In your application please indicate which role you are applying for: Chair, member or both.
- An equalities monitoring form (below).
The closing date for applications is Midday, 6 March 2020. All applications should be submitted via this page, or by email to [email protected].
If you wish to discuss the role, please contact Patrick Reihill, Head of Talent at The Whitehall and Industry group (WIG) or Paige Torrance, Talent Manager, at WIG. Both can be reached on 0207 222 1166 or at [email protected]