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MP's 77.5 Million Dollar Jackpot
Date: Monday, January 30 2006

Resigned or Defeated MPs to Collect $77.5-million in Cumulative Pension Entitlements from Taxpayers

Canadian Taxpayers Federation || January 27, 2006

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Ottawa: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) today released a list of projected pension and severance payments to be paid to 66 MPs who were either defeated in the January 23rd general election or resigned prior to the vote. Defeated or retiring MPs will collect a grand total of over $77.5-million in cumulative pension payments. (Annual pension payments total approximately $3.4-million in today’s dollars.) In addition, another $2.6-million in severance cheques will be issued to former MPs. The pension and severance calculations for individual MPs are available at

“Defeated and retiring members will win financially thanks to a gold-plated pension plan and rich severance payments for parliamentarians,” said CTF federal director John Williamson. “Shed no tears for retiring or defeated MPs. They are being well looked after by Canadian taxpayers.”

The biggest annual pension winners – the $100,000-plus club – include Liberal MPs Ethel Blondin-Andrew at $137,820; Don Boudria at $135,906; David Anderson at $114,600; Marlene Catterall at $109,408; Beth Phinney at $102,308; and Anne McLellan at $100,132. Independent David Kilgour rings in at $128,228. Cumulative pensions that will exceed $3-million will be paid to Liberals Ethel Blondin-Andrew, Don Boudria, Tony Valeri, Paddy Torsney and the Bloc's Stephane Bergeron. Please see CTF calculations for the list of those MPs that will receive cumulative pensions in excess of $2-million and $1-million.

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The CTF does not oppose the principle of a pension plan for MPs. However, the organization has long advocated for the introduction of a matching dollar-for-dollar defined contribution pension arrangement – as the CTF successfully campaigned for in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba, and Ontario – as opposed to the current defined benefit plan where taxpayers contribute approximately $4.00 for each dollar a MP contributes.

Defeated or retiring MPs are eligible to collect a pension at age 55 if they have served at least 6 years in the House of Commons. MPs who have not served the minimum years and receive no pension collect a severance equal to 50 per cent of 2005 member indemnity. Former MPs who are eligible for a pension but have not reached the age of 55 are also entitled to a severance. If a member turns 55 years old within 6 months of being eligible for a pension, a reduced severance cheque is paid to them. Lump sum severance payments range from a low of $34,012 and a high of $106,750.

“With the election of a new government it is time to bring MP pay and pensions in line with public expectations,” concluded Williamson. “The CTF will continue to call for the replacement of the current pension plan for MPs with a matching RRSP plan for all lawmakers.”

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