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Promised teacher salary increases not yet in draft state budget

2024 state budget bill document - this is in fact the accompanying explanatory memorandum.
2024 state budget bill document - this is in fact the accompanying explanatory memorandum. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

The state budget for next year is on Wednesday's agenda. However, the draft budget does not include the additional €8 million promised by the government to increase teachers' salaries.

The governing coalition reached an agreement on the teachers' pay rise on Monday evening, after the clock had already struck and the state budget procedure documents had been sent to the Riigikogu.

This leaves an extra €8 million in wage increases out of the budget. The Riigikogu's board is now looking for a solution.

"The education minister came in yesterday and announced that she found €8 million in her ministry's finances to increase pay for teachers. We agreed to that, but the Social Democrats wanted an additional €1.5 million for local governments to pay kindergarten teachers. We didn't have that kind of money, so we couldn't reach an agreement on time. This means that the documents in the state parliament are currently in their previous form, but a solution is being found on how still to incorporate the rise in teachers' wages into the budget," Erkki Keldo, chair of the Reform Party group, explained.

The deadline for sending out the procedural documents was 5 p.m., Monday.

As this substantive decision was taken after the budget had already been sent to parliament, it was not possible, and is not possible right now, to introduce this amendment," Toomas Kivimägi (Reform), the deputy speaker said.

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Editor: Merili Nael, Kristina Kersa

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