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Ministers Must Halt New Bonus Gravy Train

16 July 2013

The Transport Secretary was urged today to intervene to halt a new bonus scheme for Network Rail  five top bosses that could be worth £5.8 million by 2015.

TSSA leader Manuel Cortes has written to Patrick McLoughlin urging him to step into the latest "rewards for failure" row ahead of of NR's annual general meeting on Thursday.

The taxpayer funded firm's 45 public members are being asked at their meeting in Cardiff to endorse a double bonus scheme which would pay up to 60% annually on top of the five executives six figure salaries with a 100% long term bonus on top of that in 2015.

If passed, the new scheme would almost treble chief executive Sir David Higgins £577,000 basic salary to £1.5 million in 2015 if he met all performance targets.

"It is outrageous that Sir David could earn ten times more than the Prime Minister in two years time," said Mr Cortes. "He runs an important taxpayer rail firm but there is simply no justification to pay him that sort of salary in comparison to the PM who is running the whole country.

"NR is effectively a publicly funded utility and passengers, who have seen fares increase by 16% since the last election, will simply not understand why top executives are running their own first class gravy train while providing a second class service to the public."

In his letter, the union leader asks the Secretary of State to publicly oppose the generous bonus scheme, like his two predecessors, Justine Greening and Philip Hammond.

He has already written to the 45 public members asking them to reject the new double bonus scheme.

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