on 19 September 1997
ITEM FOR FINANCE COMMITTEE
HEAD 21 - CHIEF EXECUTIVE'S OFFICE
Subhead 001 Salaries
New Subhead 108 Remuneration for special appointments
Members are invited -
- to approve with effect from 16 December 1996 an increase of 20% in the rate of the monthly non-accountable entertainment allowance for the Chief Executive, that is, from $54,500 by $10,900 to $65,400 between 16 December 1996 and 31 March 1997 and from $57,442 by $11,488 to $68,930 from 1 April 1997; and
- to approve the creation of a new Recurrent Account Subhead 108 Remuneration for special appointments under Head 21 Chief Executive ' s Office in the 1997-98 Estimates.
The existing rate of non-accountable entertainment allowance for the Chief Executive (CE) is inadequate to meet expenditure arising from his social commitments. We also need a proper expenditure subhead to account for the remuneration for those non-civil service appointments in the CE ' s Office.
2. We propose -
- an increase in the monthly non-accountable entertainment allowance for the CE by 20% with effect from 16 December 1996 (i.e. from $54,500 by $10,900 to $65,400 between 16 December 1996 and 31 March 1997 and from $57,442 by $11,488 to $68,930 from 1 April 1997); and
- the creation of a new Recurrent Account Subhead 108 Remuneration for special appointments under Head 21 CE ' s Office in the 1997-98 Estimates.
Subhead 001 Salaries - CE's Non-accountable Entertainment Allowance
3.The existing rate of non-accountable entertainment allowance for the CE at $57,442 per month follows that of the former Governor. With the CE's extensive social commitments by virtue of his being a local and the elected head of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), the allowance at its existing rate falls short of his needs. Having considered the Independent Commission ' s recommendations on the CE ' s remuneration package, the HKSAR Executive Council agreed at its meeting held on 17 June 1997, among other things, that the monthly rate of non-accountable entertainment allowance for the CE should be increased by 20% with effect from 16 December 1996, the date Mr Tung Chee-hwa was appointed CE.
4.We therefore propose to revise upward the monthly rate of the allowance from $54,500 by $10,900 to $65,400 for the period 16 December 1996 and 31 March 1997 and from $57,442 by $11,488 to $68,930 from 1 April 1997. This will bring the CE ' s non-accountable entertainment allowance to $827,200 on an annual basis in 1997-98. In line with established practice, this allowance will be adjusted annually for inflation on 1 April in accordance with the movement in the Composite Consumer Price Index. The next adjustment will take effect from
1 April 1998.
Subhead 108 Remuneration for Special Appointments
5.Since 16 December 1996, two personal advisers, designated as Special Assistant and Senior Research Officer as well as one Personal Assistant and one Personal Chauffeur have been assisting the CE through hire of service from the Office of Tung Chee Hwa. Expenses on this hiring of service until 31 August 1997 were charged to the commitment of $91.9 million, approved by Members on 23 July 1997, for reimbursing the Central People ' s Government for funds it has advanced to the CE ' s Office in connection with the preparations for setting up the HKSAR Government.
6.At its meeting held on 2 September 1997, the Establishment Subcommittee considered EC(97-98)18 and endorsed the non-civil service appointment of the Senior Special Assistant (previously the Special Assistant). The Subcommittee also noted the continued appointment of the other three supporting staff on non-civil service terms. The pay scales of the four non-civil service appointments are pitched at the following levels -
Senior Special Assistant (at equivalent of D2 rank)
Special Assistant (at equivalent of MPS 45 - 49)
Personal Assistant (at equivalent of MPS 30 - 33)
Personal Chauffeur (at equivalent of MPS 12)
In addition to salary, they will receive the normal fringe benefits and allowances applicable to the comparable grade and rank in the civil service and end-of-contract gratuities in lieu of civil service pension.
7.These four non-civil service appointments will not form part of the civil service establishment. For accounting purposes and in line with usual practice, we shall charge expenses for their salaries and allowances to a separate non-standard Subhead 108 Remuneration for special appointments under Departmental Expenses, rather than the standard subheads for salaries and allowances under Personal Emoluments.
8.The proposal to increase the CE ' s non-accountable entertainment allowance will result in additional expenditure of $176,200 in 1997-98 for the period 16 December 1996 to 31 March 1998 for which we have not made any specific provision under the CE ' s Office in the Estimates. Subject to Members ' approval, we will provide the supplementary provision required under delegated authority.
9. As regards the non-civil service appointments, the additional expenditure for the period 1 September 1997 to 31 March 1998 is $2,325,000 and the annual requirement is $3,942,000. Subject to Members ' approval of the creation of a new Recurrent Account Subhead 108 Remuneration for special appointments under Head 21 CE ' s Office, we will also provide the supplementary provision required under delegated authority. We will include sufficient provision in the annual Estimates for subsequent years until the end of these non-civil service appointments.
10. At present, the CE, Chief Secretary for Administration (CS), Chief Justice (CJ), Financial Secretary (FS) and Secretary for Justice (S for J) are each entitled to a non-accountable entertainment allowance which is a perquisite associated with an official residence. The purpose of the non-accountable entertainment allowance is to enable the officers concerned to meet expenses for providing official entertainment at their official residence. The current annual allowances are $413,600 for CS, $344,700 for CJ, $317,000 for FS and $206,800 for S for J.
11. A number of government departments have non-civil service appointments either to reflect the status of the appointee or the operational needs of the office. These include the Independent Commission Against Corruption, The Ombudsman ' s Office and the Central Policy Unit. Salaries and allowances of the appointees are likewise accounted for under Subhead 108 Remuneration for special appointments.
Chief Executive ' s Office
[ Membership | Agenda | Papers ]