What is the ‘payroll vote’?

In response to a comment on my previous post I thought it would be a good idea if I did a brief post explaining a term that is often mentioned in news bulletins about proceedings in parliament that term is ‘the payroll vote’.

This term is frequently used to describe the votes of those members of the Government who receive an extra salary for the Ministerial duties they carry out. Somewhat confusingly the term also includes Parliamentary Private Secretaries who do not receive an extra salary.The principle of collective responsibility requires all members of the Government (ie: the Ministers) to vote the same way and support the Government’s proposals. This is the way all Governments have operated over the years. The number of Ministers is limited by the House of Commons Disqualification Act 1975 to 95.

The Public Administration Select Committee have recently prepared a detailed report which covered this area of Government which can be found here

Time we all had a say

It is over 36 years since we, the British public, had a say on what we think of our relationship with our European neighbours. Back in 1975 there was a referendum on whether or not we stayed in what was then referred to as ‘The Common Market’ the European Economic Community the E.E.C. Since then the nature of the organisation which the British people voted to remain part of has changed beyond all recognition. Firstly, the word ‘Economic’ was dropped and we became members of the European Community. Then, we became members of the European Union. All without any consultation of the British people.

It is now time we all had our say!