Guess Who's Getting a 45% Raise?

King Charles' sovereign grant to climb to $160M in 2025, up from the current $111M
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 21, 2023 7:36 AM CDT
King Charles to Get 45% Pay Raise
King Charles III reacts during a visit to the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden in St. Ives, Cornwall, England, Thursday, July 13, 2023.   (Finnbarr Webster/PA via AP)

King Charles III is set to receive a 45% raise. On Thursday, the UK Treasury announced details of the monarchy's annual budget, known as the sovereign grant, suggesting it would be slashed in the coming years to allow funds to be spent on public services, as the king himself requested, the Guardian reports. But several critics say the statement is misleading as the sovereign grant is expected to increase from its current $111 million to $160 million in 2025.

Since 2011, the sovereign grant has been determined by the profits of the crown estate—a portfolio of land holdings and other assets. The prime minister, chancellor, and the king's treasurer get together to determine what percentage of profits should be set aside for the monarchy. Since 2017, the rate has been 25%, "resulting in a steady increase in funding for the monarchy" as profits for the estate increased, per the Guardian. But profits are expected to spike next year from about $570 million to nearly $1.3 billion due to licensing revenues from the expansion of offshore wind farms.

The Treasury said the king would be entitled to 12% of the crown state's profits next year, meaning he would receive $31 million less in 2024 and $167 million less in 2025-2026 than if the rate remained at 25%. "This money will instead be used to fund vital public services, for the benefit of the nation," the Treasury said, per ABC News. It's true that the Treasury will see "a multimillion-pound boost," per Sky News. But the sovereign grant will remain unchanged at around $111 million in 2024 before climbing to $160 million in 2025 and $162 million in 2026, per the Guardian.

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Asked about the change, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson said the increase would be "temporary, only for the financial years of 2025-6 and 2026-7" so as to provide funding for palace renovations, reportedly aimed at preventing a serious risk of fire and flood. A Treasury rep confirmed that, saying "we will review the grant in 2026, expecting to bring it back down in 2027." But as the Guardian notes, a clause in the Sovereign Grant Act means "the amount of money handed to the monarch can never fall, even if the crown estate's profits decrease." (More King Charles III stories.)

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