The Remuneration Authority sets a total amount of remuneration based on the expected demands of the job, including hours of work and holidays. This can be expressed as an annual salary or as a daily or hourly rate depending on the nature of the position (full-time, part-time or irregular).

Where people are provided with non-salary components such as superannuation, motor vehicles and additional holiday or leave arrangements, the salary component of the package may be reduced accordingly.

The Authority also sets the annuities for former Governors-General and former Prime Ministers.

Reimbursements and allowances

Work-related expenses such as necessary travel costs and communication equipment are not remuneration and in most cases the same provisions applying to staff of an agency or department are applied to people whose remuneration is set by the Authority. Where these provisions do not provide a personal benefit the Authority does not consider them when setting remuneration.

The Authority does set and/or approve reimbursement or allowance arrangements in some areas:

  • Members of Parliament have an out of pocket allowance set by the Authority which is reviewed annually as part of their salary determination. This allowance covers a range of expenses that are reviewed at the beginning of each parliamentary term and listed in the Parliamentary Salaries and Allowances Determination.
  • Members of Parliament have entitlements to accommodation services both when travelling within New Zealand and whilst attending parliamentary business in Wellington. Other work-related allowance and expenses are provided for by the Speaker and the Minister responsible for Ministerial Services.
  • Most judicial officers’ out of pocket allowances are generally included in their remuneration. Certain allowances for some judicial officers are contained in the current Judicial Officers (Salaries and Allowances) Determination. Other work-related expenses reimbursements are provided under policies set by the Attorney-General and administered by the Ministry of Justice.
  • Local authority expenses and allowances for elected members are approved by the Authority on a council by council basis. Current entitlements are required to be made public by the council on request and are displayed on the council’s website. Some elected members allowances are listed in the current Local Government Members Determination.