Part of Bishop Agnes Sigurðardóttir’s justification for requesting a pay rise is the rent she pays on a 487m2 house in downtown Reykjavík: 90,000 ISK – well below the average rent paid in the area.
As reported, the Bishop recently requested that the Wage Committee review her salary, and this committee awarded her a 21% pay rise, taking her monthly salary to 1.55 million ISK per month. She was also awarded a one-time retroactive payment of 3.24 million ISK.
Vísir now reports that part of her justification for the pay rise is that she pays 90,000 ISK per month in rent. This rent is paid on the Bishop’s official residency at Bergstaðastræti 75, a 487m2 house valued at 185 million ISK.
To give you some idea of how low this rent is for the property the Bishop occupies, Viðskiptablaðið reported last April that the average rent for 75m2 apartment in downtown Reykjavík is 187,000 ISK, putting the average cost at 2,556 ISK per square metre. By this rate, the rent the Bishop’s property should be is closer to 1,244,772 ISK.
The Bishop emphasised that she has no choice but to live at this residency.
“I am duty bound to live here,” she told reporters. “This is the Bishop’s residency, which means that there is also a reception area for the Bishop. I share my kitchen with the catering staff, as I say sometimes. There’s only one kitchen and you don’t always know who’s working in your kitchen.”