Take Back The Tap – Water Bosses Cost Households £58 Million!

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The GMB has decided to tell us all that the water utilities must be renationalised. Because, and get this, this bosses have made £58 million over the past 5 years. Such a sum means that quite obviously it will be cheaper to have government running the sector rather than the private capitalist lackeys.

Hmm, well, yes, worth doing the sums here:

The bosses of England’s privatised water companies have been criticised for banking £58m in pay and benefits over the last five years while customers have been faced with above-inflation rises in their water bills.

The GMB union said the chief executives of England’s nine water and sewage companies were “fat cats” earning “staggering sums” from the management of a natural resource.

Tim Roache, GMB’s general secretary, said the pay awarded to water bosses was a national scandal and launched a campaign to return the industry to public ownership.

Household water bills have risen by 40% above inflation since the industry was privatised in 1989, according to a National Audit Office report. The average bill this year will be £405, a 2% increase on last year, according to Water UK, the trade body that represents water and sewerage companies.

Hmm, OK. So, there are some 29 million households in the UK (from memory, so no snarking over detail). Paying £405 a year. That’s a £12 billion a year industry, close enough. £60 billion over 5 years, £60 million in boss capitalist lackey running dog pay, that’s 10 pence per household, or 2p per household per year.

Yes, that’s a good justification for renationalisation, isn’t it?

On the other hand there are 166,500 people working in the water industry. What do we think the pay rise they all get in a nationalised industry might be? Well, it is more than 0.0000001 p a year then it’s going to cost the consumer more, isn’t it? And why would the workers’ union be calling for renationalisation if they didn’t think they’d be able to gain pay rises for the workers thereby?

As another union is demanding:

Launching the campaign, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “The water companies are making huge profits, and are paying their top executives huge salaries. They could easily afford to start paying their lowest-paid employees a proper living wage. And even if they did there would still be an ocean between those at the top and those at the bottom.

“While some water companies like Yorkshire Water, Northumbrian Water and Scottish Water have done the decent thing and now pay the living wage, many – including Thames Water, Anglian Water and Wessex Water – still don’t.

Oh aye, nationalisation will be cheaper, will it?

Pah!

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Southernerbloke in spainBloke in North DorsetTim WorstallSpike Recent comment authors
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Hollando
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Hollando

Not sure I follow your calculations…
£58M divided by 29M households = £2, split over 5 years is 40p, no?

Not that it changes your argument…

Spike
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Spike

The reason I do not have more spare change is not that some other jammy bastard has too much. The reason the hospital bill is so high is not that the hospital has expensive MRI miracle machines. Fixating on the biggest-ticket items is usually a sign of a foolish legislator trying to look wise. A private monopoly has just as serious measurement problems as a government monopoly, in terms of knowing whether management pay is excessive. But this campaign is pure envy, from a union that simply wants more control over the industry for itself, plus some of those millions… Read more »

Spike
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Spike

The reason I do not have more spare change is not that some other jammy bastard has too much. The reason the hospital bill is so high is not that the hospital has expensive MRI miracle machines. Fixating on the biggest-ticket items is usually a sign of a foolish legislator trying to look wise. A private monopoly has just as serious measurement problems as a government monopoly, in terms of knowing whether management pay is excessive. But this campaign is pure envy, from a union that simply wants more control over the industry for itself, plus some of those millions… Read more »

Bloke in North Dorset
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Bloke in North Dorset

There was a couple of long news reports yesterday and not once did anyone ask why this is happening in rape cases and nothing else.

If you want to fix the symptoms you have to find the underlying problem, or root cause analysis in the jargon. No doubt this will just be brushed away with platitudes about lessons learnt and insincere apologies to the victims whilst blaming lack of resources and austerity. In the meantime political pressure to increase conviction rates will continue.

Bloke in North Dorset
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Bloke in North Dorset

There was a couple of long news reports yesterday and not once did anyone ask why this is happening in rape cases and nothing else.

If you want to fix the symptoms you have to find the underlying problem, or root cause analysis in the jargon. No doubt this will just be brushed away with platitudes about lessons learnt and insincere apologies to the victims whilst blaming lack of resources and austerity. In the meantime political pressure to increase conviction rates will continue.

bloke in spain
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bloke in spain

Must say, I find regarding sewage as a “natural resource” a novel concept.

Southerner
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(y)

bloke in spain
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bloke in spain

Must say, I find regarding sewage as a “natural resource” a novel concept.