KayTie asks an interesting question. Where does nef get its money from?
The accounts are here.
Unfortunately, it\’s not actually all that clear. They\’ve got four subsidiary operations which themselves don\’t seem to file accounts with the Charities Commission. Income from those four are simply listed in the nef accounts as "income from charitable activities". Not really much sense of where they come from.
But another potential route to where they do come from. This is very speculative remember, and a better accountant than I could probably provide much better information. (Note, please, that this is purely opinion, not fact!)
Our funding sources are diverse and we receive funding from trusts and foundations, local, regional and national government and through consultancy contracts.
OK, so can we pull anything out of that? Perhaps. The consulting arm looks to be very new and is pretty much, at least in these 2007 accounts, in a trial period. I don\’t think it\’s all that absurd to think that income from this area is pretty much nil.
OK, what about trusts and foundations?
"Voluntary income" is £350 k or so (page 38) and total income is £3 million or so.
Absent accounts for those four subsidiaries, I don\’t therefore think it unreasonable to assume that 90% of their income comes from "local, regional and national government".
So, if the above is correct, yes, they are living off the taxpayers\’ teat. That\’s you and me paying these people.
A couple of things also worth mentioning. Divding total salaries by number of full time posts equivalent we get an average pay cheque (for a full timer) of £40 k a year or so (err, before employers\’ NI and pension costs). That\’s a pretty good screw for telling us all to consume less.
There\’s also this.
One employee is remunerated at a rate between £60,000 and £70,000 (2006: one). No other
employee earned more than £60,000 in the year. Pension contributions of £4,224 and
contributions to a savings scheme of £845 (2006: £4,808 contributed to a savings scheme) were
paid on behalf of one employee earning between £60,000 and £70,000.
Now who might that be? As purely an opinion I\’d say Andrew Simms, for he is the head bod there (trustees get nothing so it ain\’t the head trustee).
At a guess I\’d say he also gets £10k a year or more from his freelance writing activities. Certainly he writes for The Guardian often enough and if they pay me I assume they pay him too.
Now what he earns on the open market is of course something which I\’m entirely delighted for him to get. You are indeed entitled to the returns from the sweat of your brow, just as everyone else is. But an income of three times the national median income is a little, erm, rich, for one who says that material matters do not bring happiness, that consumption is not the goal or aim of life and that we really do want to stop all growth now so that we can usher in the hippy dippy nirvana.
And taking at least twice the national median income out of the pockets of the taxpayers to tell us all this is really, umm, very rich indeed, don\’t you think?
One more thought. Polly trots out numbers showing that over around £70 k a year (I think I\’ve remembered that correctly) puts you in the top 1% of income earners in the country. How nice that someone telling us that income doesn\’t matter, that there are more important things in life, is one of those top 1%.
Now, as I\’ve said, this is all rather speculative and I certainly don\’t insist that my interpretations of the numbers are correct. However, I do also know that just occasionally bods from the nef read this blog. I\’ve had emails to tell me so. I\’d be absolutely delighted to be corrected on any errors I might have made above and my comments section is, as ever, open for such to be made.
Over to you Andrew.
Update: a correspondent writes in to note this on the bio for Andrew. "Andrew studied at the LSE"
Studied what, at which level, and to what result he asks?