Motion S5M-00017: Returning Officer Bonuses

18 May 2016

That the Parliament understands that the returning officers responsible for organising elections are likely to be paid considerable extra on top of what many would consider to be extremely generous salaries; notes reports that, following the 2016 Scottish election and the EU referendum in June, returning officers across the country could benefit to the sum of almost £500,000 between them; affirms that returning officers have an extremely important role that is sometimes carried out in difficult circumstances; notes however the reported comments of Malcolm Burr, the chair of the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives Scotland, that “the outdated system of remuneration requires a review” and of Willie Sullivan, the director of the Electoral Reform Society Scotland, that the running of elections should be “added to the job descriptions of local authority chief executives as an integral part of their role”, and agrees that, at a time of budgetary restraint, a review of this expenditure is required.