Speaker of Greek Parliament, Nikos Voutsis, announced the …unprecedented: That Greek lawmakers will be equally taxed as the ordinary Greek citizens. Speaking to private television Kontra TV, Voutsis said on Thursday that he will introduce an amendment according to which MPs will no longer enjoy taxation benefits.
“There will be full equalization in the tax area. I think, this is the minimum that should and can be done. Everyone is aware, the political parties, the members of the Parliament, it is understandable,” Voutsis said.
Greece’s lawmakers enjoy tax benefits for 70% of their salary. They pay taxes for just 30% of their income. This has to do with the fact, that some office expenses are given to MPs as salary.
At the same time, Parliament speaker announced an intervention concerning the pension scheme for former lawmakers who retired and their pension suffered sharp cuts due to the bailout agreements.
Lawmakers used to receive full pension after serving two legislative periods.
Apparently this was changed last year, and now they receive only a small fraction of their salary is been calculated as ‘pension’, similar to civil servants going into retirement with 15 years of work. Voutsis said that the pensions scheme for lawmakers was scrapped in 2012 and that retired lawmakers find it hard to come along with such pension amounts.
Pension after fifteen years work in the public administration could come up with some 400 euros per month.
However, one should note that many retired lawmakers also receive pensions from other funds as they kept paying contributions.
Of course, also citizens have paid contributions all these years, with those of the private sector to have given 26 percent of their gross earnings to the social security funds for main pension, supplementary pension and health care.
However, in the weird Greek world, civil servants who have been paying less contributions all these years enjoy a better pension.
Voutsis did not say exactly when the tax equalization will go info effect.