21 May 2021

Bernard Keane and Glenn Dyer: “What remarkable sophistry governments engage in when it comes to discussing wages. And not just Coalition governments. … The Victorian government and its treasurer Tim Pallas would have us believe that wages growth floats free of any connection with what that state’s biggest employer does. Pallas’ budget papers note that ‘Victorian wages growth had been subdued in recent years’… Not a word about Pallas’ own wages policy for his public service — which the budget papers elsewhere describe as a ‘rebalancing’. … That ‘rebalancing’ is a cut in the Victorian public service pay rise cap to 2% from 3%, along with a cut in the guaranteed annual base increase for public servants from 2% to 1.5%, below inflation, and the same level as that of the NSW government. … The beloved-by-progressives Andrews government is thus further tightening its restrictions on wages growth which, as the state’s biggest employer, will inevitably filter through to the wider Victorian employment market.”