Money makes the world go round, but Northern Ireland has not signed up for a Cabaret show which leaves Stormont standing still.
Frustrations amongst the voting public, who placed 90 MLAs in the seats on the promise of working for all, fixing the health service, tackling the cost of living crisis, will grow the longer the NI Assembly stagnates.
And yes, MLAs may well be getting on with the day to day business in their own constituencies, but what people want to see is value for their money — and that money is over £100,000 a week in salaries to the detriment of the taxpayer who may be sitting on a waiting list for a hospital appointment or missing the latest payment on their heating bill.
There are fine words from those on the hill, words of wanting to get back to work to fix the ills of society. Usually where there’s a will, there’s a way, but once again Stormont is in danger of getting lost along the path with every party heading in a different direction.
All the new representatives have signed in, but even those who are itching to get back to work could face six months on the political sidelines through no fault of their own.
If nothing changes in that six month period, which take up almost to next Christmas, then Northern Ireland will face another election, and we will have paid MLAs around £2,852,000 for their privilege
In the meantime, all that money sitting in the Stormont coffers could be put to the urgent use it is there for. Indeed, the only money flowing out of Stormont that hasn’t already been apportioned will be that headed in the direction of the pockets of the MLAs.
MLAs, part press officers and other staff are all paid by the taxpayer. Taken to the logical conclusion, we, the people, are the employers of all of them.
The cost of living crisis uppermost in the minds of the public, it will look even worse, and that’s something political leaders will need to be mindful of — otherwise there will be plenty of harsh questions if they return to the campaign trail seeking votes again before the end of the year.
If there’s one thing the years since Brexit has taught us all, it’s that there are no easy answers, but the world should not stop spinning until it’s sorted.
We may not all agree with the way MLAs work, or what they are working towards, but we at least expect them to work.
Politics may not be as simple as a commercial transaction, but if we walk into a shop and pay for goods to be delivered, we’d certainly make a song and a dance about that.