Late night changes rob QLD workers of $210,000 in super

THE Queensland Opposition has accused the Government of robbing police, teachers and nurses of up to $210,000 worth of superannuation. 

The changes were pushed through parliament in the early hours of this morning after a late night debate saw the LNP's Scott Emerson accuse Treasurer Curtis Pitt of trying to get: "his grubby hands on their money." 

"The fact is that these changes could leave a public servant with more than 30 years experience up to $210,000 worse off," Mr Emerson said. 

"We have it in evidence from Queensland Treasury-the example of a government worker losing as much as $210,000 from their final retirement benefit.

"Under these changes, any time a public servant on the standard defined benefit fund receives an increase in their superannuable salary, the Treasurer can review it with the power to change the multiple at which their final salary is determined.

"This would significantly reduce the final retirement benefit of core public servants including police, teachers and nurses.

"The changes would mean public servants who have successfully negotiated to have allowances rolled into their salary will no longer have this considered as part of their super entitlements."

The multiple referred to is the amount at which a public servant's super rate is increased for each year of work. 

Public servant's could also previously count allowances towards their income and thus receive extra super - something which is gone under these changes. 

However Treasurer Curtis Pitt described the way in which civil servants had used allowances to increase their wage as "artificial".

"The bill proposes to formalise the existing administrative process to manage unfunded windfall benefit gains resulting from artificial salary increases," Mr Pitt said.  

"Let me be clear: this amendment applies only to employees with defined benefit accounts.

"There is no effect on the benefits accrued before the artificial increase in salary and there is no change to the treatment of normal salary growth, promotions or existing allowances."

The changes eventually passed through the Queensland Parliament with the session ending at 2.27am last night. 

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