7 May 2024

NZ First MP Jamie Arbuckle, who wanted to keep his pay as councillor pay too, changes his mind

10:45 am on 7 May 2024
New Zealand First MP Jamie Arbuckle delivers his maiden speech in Parliament, 14 December 2023.

Jamie Arbuckle. Photo: Johnny Blades / VNP

Jamie Arbuckle, the Marlborough district councillor who became an MP at the October election, says "upon reflection" he will donate the money from his council role to a local charity.

He was at the centre of questions after deciding to stay in the two roles, and continue getting paid for both.

In a statement, the NZ First MP originally said he would remain as a Marlborough District councillor until October of this year to avoid a "costly" byelection should he resign before then.

"At the moment, I believe I'm still doing the job of a councillor," he said, video-calling home from Wellington but still making it to most Marlborough District Council meetings in person.

But after "feedback and upon reflection", he said on Tuesday, any money he got from his council role since the election would be "donated to a local district community charity".

Councillors in Marlborough with no extra responsibilities were paid $40,250, but Arbuckle was on the economic finance committee, earning more.

An MP's base salary was $163,961, plus office expenses, superannuation, accommodation supplements and more.