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PAY HIKE FOR LOWER-WAGE CIVIL SERVANTS

About 2,200 lower-wage civil servants will receive a salary increase of between $60 and $80 next month, announced Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Teo Chee Hean in the Committee of Supply debate yesterday.

They will also be provided with relevant opportunities to upgrade their skills.

MORE OPPORTUNITIES FOR NON-DEGREE HOLDERS

From August, diploma holders will be recruited and will progress along the same Management Executive Scheme as degree holders, said DPM Teo.

"Officers assessed to have the same performance and potential will have the same opportunities for advancement and career development, whether they are degree holders or not," he said.

Currently, degree holders are in the Management Executive Scheme while non-degree holders are recruited under the Management Support Scheme.

NO CHANGE TO MINISTERIAL PAY FORMULA

Ministerial salaries did not increase in the last three years, said DPM Teo.

This is despite the overall 3 per cent rise per year to the benchmark that the pay was pegged to.

Based on the latest figures, the benchmark salary for a minister at entry "MR4" grade, inclusive of bonuses, should be $1.2 million a year, but the Government has kept it at $1.1 million - the 2012 level, he said.

In 2012, an independent committee called for ministerial salaries to be linked to the median income of the top 1,000 earners who are Singaporean citizens, with a 40 per cent discount to reflect the ethos of political service.

LIBRARY UPGRADES

The new Tampines Regional Library, Punggol Regional Library and Bedok Public Library will be opening within the next few years, said Minister of State for Communications and Information Sim Ann during the Ministry of Communications and Information's Committee of Supply debate yesterday.

Pasir Ris and Bukit Panjang Library, which are located in malls, will be expanded within the next two years.