Editorial: comfortable life – Lääne Elu

Yesterday, the central unions of employers and trade unions confirmed the minimum wage for next year – 725 euros. Along with next year’s minimum wage, the central unions also want the minimum wage to be separate from taxes and fees, such as the attendance fee for kindergarten or the salary of municipal managers.

It is ironic that exactly on the same day, the Haapsalu council passed a decision that the place fee for Haapsalu kindergartens is six percent of the previous year’s minimum wage. In fact, the place fees in Haapsalu kindergartens have been linked to the minimum wage for the last four years, and yesterday’s decision was only meant to make life easier. The previous decision re-established the place fee every year, from now on the principle will be the same, but the decision no longer needs to be adopted every year.

Haapsalu deputy mayor Kaja Rootare said that the seat fee must be based on a specific basis. Central unions, however, believe that tying the kindergarten place fee to the minimum wage is only a path of easier resistance for local government leaders, because it ensures an uncontested annual fee increase. With the annual increase, what has happened without much fanfare is that in 2019, the fee for a child who went to the nursery group in Haapsalu has almost doubled when going to school, and it has tripled for children in Ridala.

Years ago, linking the fee to the minimum wage was justified by the fact that in many other municipalities, the fee is determined according to the minimum wage. Now that Estonia’s two largest cities – Tallinn and Tartu – have given up linking the place fee to the minimum wage, Haapsalu has no plans to go along with it. Involuntarily, you get the feeling that yesterday’s decision to tie your pay to the minimum wage forever is to make your life easier.

Over the years, the linking of fees and salaries to the minimum wage has decreased. It has been a long time since there have been no fines related to the minimum wage, as of this year child support is no longer related to the minimum wage. With this connection, it would be difficult for a parent earning an average salary to pay maintenance for two or three children.

Source: Lääne Elu by online.le.ee.

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