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Government income hits £1 billion for first time – but staff costs rise

Government income hits £1 billion for first time – but staff costs rise

Friday 05 May 2023

Government income hits £1 billion for first time – but staff costs rise

Friday 05 May 2023


Money going into the Treasury topped £1 billion for the first-time last year, with the Government ending 2022 with a £104m surplus – however the amount spent on staff wages still continues to grow.

Publishing the States of Jersey annual accounts today, Treasury Minister Ian Gorst said that the public balance sheet was "strong", as was the outlook for the future.

As well as a better-than-expected income – thanks to rising interest rates and financial services proving resilient during the pandemic – expenditure was also lower than expected, mainly down to the Government having to spend less on its covid response than budgeted for.

General revenue income was £1.03 billion (£998m in 2021) while expenditure was £873m (£888m in 2021)

The £104m surplus, which includes depreciation, compares to a £59m surplus in 2021.

Looking across the whole of the ‘States of Jersey Group’ – which includes investment funds and 100%-owned subsidiaries Andium Homes, Ports of Jersey and Jersey Development Company – the picture for 2022 was more mixed, with the group ending the year with a £268m deficit compared to a £239m surplus in 2021.

However, much of that was down to a 6.5% fall in the value of investments over 2022, which have already bounced back by 4.5% in the first three months of this year.

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Pictured: The top earner in the civil service was outgoing CEO Suzanne Wylie, who earned up to £270,000 including pension contributions.

A significant cost for the Government last year was its growing workforce. It spent £512m of its expenditure on staff, £35m more (7%) than it did in 2021.

As an average over the whole of the year, the Government – excluding its subsidiaries but including fixed-term as well as permanent employees – had a headcount of 7,904 and 7,147 full-time equivalents.

This was 431 more employees than 2021 based on headcount and 348 more full-time equivalents.

Taking the three subsidiaries into account, the group employed 8,354 people in 2022 (1,188 more than 2021), and 7,595 FTEs (431 more than 2021).

Deputy Gorst said that the vast majority of these posts related to “key service delivery demands and moves to fill vacant posts”. 

They included additional teaching assistants and teachers, additions in blue light services, a developing public health function, and fixed-term staff delivering the Integrated Technology Solutions programme, he said.

The Government wage bill in 2022 was £436m, compared to £403m in 2021, an 8.4% increase. On top of that, £58.4m was paid in pensions and £25m in social security.

The £12.4m overtime bill increased by 48% over the year, while the Government opted to buy £334,000 of annual leave, something it didn’t have to do at all in 2021.

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Pictured: Treasury Minister Ian Gorst said that the public balance sheet was "strong", as was the outlook for the future.

Top earner in the civil service was outgoing CEO Suzanne Wylie, who earned up to £270,000, including pension contributions, having started on 1 February 2022. 

147 people earned £150,000 or over, compared to 119 in 2021 – a 23% increase.

311 employees earned £100,000-£149,999 compared to 240 people in 2021 – a 30% increase.

Breaking that down, 169 civil servants earned more than £100,000 in 2022. They were joined by 122 doctors, 37 headteachers and deputies, 50 contractors, 37 lawyers and 16 in the States of Jersey Police.

There was a total of 27 individuals who received £737,487 in severance and ex-gratia payments between them in 2022. 

This compares with 22 individuals who received £851,871 in 2021. These payments were for compulsory and voluntary redundancy and loss of office.

At the end of 2022, the Government held £9.2 billion worth of assets and had £1.3 billion of liabilities, including £879m of external borrowing, such as £500m bond taken out last year to pay off pension past-service liabilities.

READ MORE ...

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Comments

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Posted by Keith Marsh on
More staff and managers, but the service does not improve.
Something for the Chief Minister and Treasury Minister Ian Gorst to consider and comment on.
Posted by Michael Van Neste on
The States must surely now, given that these numbers are a return to "normality", address the severe disparities that afflict our society in Jersey. Clearly there is no need to increase taxes to accomplish a fairer society, which, in fact, would be good for all. We must make our Island fit to live in, for everybody and we have the means. Do we have the will? Do we care enough?
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