Salga proposes 2.8% wage increase for 2021
The South African Local Government Association (Salga) has proposed a 2.8% salary increase for the 2021 Salary and Wage negotiations at the SA Local Government Bargaining Council.
Salga said its proposal, an across-the-board increase of 2.8% for Year 1 (2021/2022 financial year), was 1.5% below the projected CPI and a total freeze of increases on all benefits that were linked to salary increases.
“Considering that the municipalities sector has been one of the hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, these negotiations represent a critical point in efforts to save municipalities from complete financial collapse,” it said.
The group also proposed a three-year salary and wage collective agreement to continue to maintain stability in the local government sector, as well as support the sectors’ sustainability requirements and objectives.
Salga said the South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) and Independent Municipal and Allied Trade Union (Imatu), the two unions that represented labour, had also exchanged their demands.
“Given the devastation on the economy by the Covid-19 pandemic, macroeconomic and the global economic outlook, the 2021 salary and wage negotiations take place against a financially strained environment, and the economic damage is evident and represents the largest economic shock the world has experienced in decades,” it said.
Its proposal called for parties to consider the interest-based bargaining approach to the negotiations. “This approach ensures that these negotiations deliver outcomes that will support the financial recovery of municipalities,” said Salga.
Salga said some municipalities were unable to afford the wage costs and would have to apply no more than a zero-percent increase in the 2021/22 Medium-Term Revenue and Expenditure Framework.
“As of 31 December 2020, 160 municipalities experienced a form of financial distress resulting in a serious material breach of financial commitments. Of these municipalities, 111 were experiencing severe financial distress resulting in persistent material breach of financial commitments,” it said.
Salga said the current salary and wage collective agreement expired on June 30.
BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE