HL Deb 13 March 2003 vol 645 cc202-3WA
Lord Lester of Herne Hill

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether their jurisdiction for the link between the Lord Chancellor's salary and pension benefits and the salary and pension benefits of the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales depends upon the fact that the Lord Chancellor is the most senior judge and is entitled to sit in a judicial capacity; and, if not, what is the justification for maintaining the link in current circumstances. [HL1596]

The Lord Privy Seal (Lord Williams of Mostyn)

The 1983 Review of Parliamentary Pay and Allowances (Cmnd. 8881–1) by the Top Salaries Review Body recommended that, in recognition of his pre-eminent position in the judiciary and his responsibilities as a whole, the Lord Chancellor's salary should be higher than that of the Lord Chief Justice. The Lord Chancellor's functions as head of the judiciary include, among other things, being President of the Supreme Court and having overall responsibility for the conduct of the judges and the lay magistracy. The recommendation was accepted by the Government and incorporated into the Ministerial and Other Pensions and Salaries Act 1991. This set the difference between the Lord Chancellor's salary and the Lord Chief Justice's at £2,000. The Ministerial and Other Salaries Order 1996 subsequently increased this to £2,500. The SSRB has been asked to review the remuneration of the office of Lord Chancellor.