Round Ismail (MDG), a representative of the Oslo City Council, says he worked hard to avoid getting double the standard pay from the Oslo Municipality and Storting, but still get it. For Dagbladet, he settled with the double pay of politicians.
– Although I work very hard to avoid it, getting paid twice is very frustrating. I think it’s wrong, Ismail tells Dagbladet about the money he’s getting in June.
– The system is set up to receive double payments until you do something.
Last fall, Ismail suddenly had to appear in Storting as a deputy representative of Lon Marie Berg’s MDG profile, who was on sick leave indefinitely. He explains that it is not natural to apply for leave from a city council representative because he does not know how long he will meet.
He soon realized that he would receive a fixed salary in both Oslo Municipality and Storting.
– Therefore, I contacted the city council administration that I would not pay twice the fixed annual salary to the councilors. I was told that City Hall would not reduce the annual salaries of city council representatives who meet in Storting.
After a long stay in Storting, Ismail says he contacted City Hall again a few months later and proposed several solutions – which did not succeed. When the payment was made by the Oslo Municipality in June, he decided to donate a doubling grant of about 9,000 kronor to nature and youth.
– I had to examine what the annual salary for the city council was, divide that amount by 365 days and then multiply the daily amount by the number of days I was in Sorting. This is how I discovered how much I donate to nature and youth, he adds:
– I think everyone who reads this will understand how stupid it is to do this without being paid twice.
The MDG politician, on the one hand, believes that donating this money to nature and youth is fundamentally wrong because it means that taxpayer money should not actually go to charity. On the other hand, he thinks he is happy to donate money to activists who have been trained in disobedience to prevent mining waste from being dumped in Fort Ford.
– But above all, I should not have gotten that money in the first place, that is my main point.
Ismail is well aware that he believes that double standard payments are not necessary.
– Sorting’s salary is too high to compensate for delegates working night and early morning. I think it would be wrong to add Sorting’s salary to the City Council salary during my time as City Council and Sporting representative.
– There is no good reason for some elected representatives in both positions to be paid more than you get in Sorting.
In January 2021, a committee called the Pay Commission submitted its report to Sporting. Among other things, they suggested that “pay for elected representatives who hold elected positions at multiple levels should be consolidated so that the overall position is not considered unreasonably high.” However, they do not recommend introducing specific guidelines to prevent double compensation.
Call of Sorting
Storting management will not comment on the double pay for Dagbladet, citing its own recommendation to Storting after receiving a report from the pay panel.
“The president noted the committee’s recommendation that the salaries of elected representatives holding office at various levels should be consolidated so that the overall situation would not be considered unreasonably high.
– What do you think about Sorting not cleaning up this issue?
– I think this is nonsense. They should have done it a long time ago.
– What I am most excited about is that these projects need to be in the media spotlight for something to happen. The benefits of elected representatives seem imminent unless a minister resigns. The plans were not well known before, and therefore were not perceived as unreasonable. But now new demands have been put forward. We now admit that the plans are nonsense and there is no doubt that they need to be changed.
Ismail now worries about the trust people have in politicians.
– Double vacation pay, passenger housing, taxes and sexual harassment – I think if you put this case above all else, it contributes to weakening trust in elected representatives, and he says:
– We have seen a decline in confidence after passenger housing cases, which is very dangerous. All elected representatives must understand that the damage they do to the faith in democracy is being inflicted on themselves.
The 22-year-old says issues that contribute to weakening trust in politicians often become the topic of conversation when talking to friends about what politicians do in their jobs. He says this frustrates many elected officials his age.
– I feel there is a generation of politicians who are frustrated that we are being cut in the same comb as those who did wrong.
On Monday, Dagbladet Defense Minister Bjørn Arild Gram (Sp) He received about 70,000 kroner in 2018 and 2019, while he received full pay from Stingger municipality for his work as mayor.
Gram told Dagblatt that he believed he had followed all the rules, but that Dagbladet had chosen to return the money to the municipality of Stenkjer after contacting him. This should leave no doubt in his credibility.
– I think it’s good to have a gram refund, but it’s one thing for him to do that. My main point is that we can not depend on the people who do what Gram did – Ismail concludes after DocBlade reveals it:
– We must have systems in place to ensure that you do not receive duplicate payments and other unreasonable plans. But as long as we do not have it, Dagbladet and other media outlets will have to unleash such cases to get elected representatives to pay back.
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