Speaking at the party’s spring conference held in Cheltenham, Cameron warned he would establish a “government of thrift” and ensure public sector pay reflected the realities of the economy.
Cameron told delegates: “Let me make it clear to everyone who works in the public sector: we will honour existing pay deals, including any three-year pay deals. But many of them end next year.
“And this is the deal we’ll be offering you then: we will help you by getting rid of the central direction and bureaucracy that undermines your professional autonomy and morale. And in exchange we will ask for your help in solving Labour’s debt crisis by keeping the cost of public sector pay only as high as the country can responsibly afford.”
He called for a culture change at every level of government whereby public sector workers were rewarded for their frugality.
“On my watch it will be simple: if you do more for less, you get promoted. If you do less for more, you get sacked,” he said.
The Tory leader added that the publication of details of all those earning more £150,000 would lead to ‘quangocrats’ leaving, who he claimed had been getting rich at the taxpayers’ expense.
In his speech, Cameron identified five public sector employees who he believes are overpaid and would be among those targeted by his government. His list included Ed Richards, chief executive of communications regulator Ofcom, who earns £400,000, and the four bosses of the water plant British Waterways, who earn a combined salary of £900,000.