He is now taking an immediate 10% reduction to his £152,734 annual salary, which will see it cut by around £15,300. Pay for his senior appointments at City Hall has also been frozen.
Khan said Londoners had done the right thing to beat coronavirus ‘by following the rules, staying at home and helping to save lives’ and claimed the government was now ‘punishing them with a new era of austerity’.
He continued: ‘Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on London’s public finances which were in great shape before the pandemic. TfL’s fares income has dropped by more than 90% and local business rates and council tax income has fallen off a cliff.
‘This is the worst possible time for a return to austerity – just when we need to invest in London’s recovery.
‘Unless ministers act, the current number of police officers will need to be reduced and it will be impossible to tackle youth violence or make the changes to the London Fire Brigade that are desperately needed after the awful Grenfell Tower tragedy.’
The shortfall in tax receipts is due to ongoing reductions in the number of firms paying business rates and households unable keep up with council tax bills.
Khan is urging the government to act on Johnson’s promise that he would not return to austerity measures to balance the books as a result of the coronavirus crisis. He warned that failure to act would jeopardise the Prime Minister’s commitment to recruit 20,000 extra police officers.
He added: ‘I didn’t enter politics to administer government austerity, and I will do everything in my power to persuade ministers not to force another era of austerity on local and regional government.
‘Whatever happens I will protect the frontline services that Londoners depend on as much as possible – and it’s only right that I should volunteer for an immediate pay cut in these extremely difficult circumstances and continue not to take any pension contributions.
‘In addition, I have taken the decision to freeze the salaries of my political appointments at City Hall.’
Khan will soon publish new budget guidance. This request that the GLA, TfL, Scotland Yard, London Fire Brigade, the London Legacy Development Corporation, Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation report back by the end of November on how they could deliver significant savings.
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