salgbc thumb100 Independent Media reports that municipalities have been warned to only budget for affordable salary increases this year.

Negotiations at the SA Local Government Bargaining Council (Salgbc) are due to commence soon as the current wage agreement expires at the end of June. Municipal workers were among state employees who were afforded salary increases last year, receiving wage hikes of 6.25%. According to the National Treasury, a number of municipalities are unable to afford their current wage cost as it is and will have to apply no more than a zero increase in 2021/22 and exercise the option of exemption for any negotiated increase above the level of their affordability. In a municipal budget circular dated 8 March, the Treasury wrote: “Given the current (situation) exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, municipalities are urged to consider projecting increases to wages that would reflect their affordability.” Municipal and city managers have been warned that should they fail to consider salary increases within the ambit of available resources and financial position, this could constitute financial misconduct. But, the SA Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) has already indicated that it would be demanding an across the board salary increase of R4,000 a month from SA’s 257 municipalities and their entities when wage negotiations start. Samwu has cited the local government sector’s huge salary gap that needs to be narrowed to improve workers’ standards of living.


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