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No pay raise for the British queen: report

London: A financial crisis is a great leveller. Proposed spending cuts by the British government are to affect the queen's annual bursary too, according to a media report.

The government may announce a one-year freeze in the Civil List, a settlement under which the queen receives money from parliament every year to perform her public duties.

Currently, the annual payment stands at 7.9 million pounds. The settlement is increased every decade, but this amount has remained frozen since 1990.

Sir Alan Reid, the queen's treasurer, is understood to have told government officials that the monarch's expenditure is now running at around 7 million pounds more than the annual allowance, The Daily Mail reports.

However, the government is concerned about pubic outrage if the Civil List is doubled at a time when the country is passing through its worst financial crisis. It is expected that the government may freeze the List for a year and call for a review of the royal expenses.

An alternative plan is to go in for a comprehensive grant to cover the expenses under the List as also the cost of the royal family's travel and the upkeep of palaces. The idea of funding the queen from income generated by the Crown Estate is also being toyed with.

Royal sources say the queen has always used the money judiciously. In fact, during 1990-2000, her economy measures resulted in a surplus of 35 million pounds in the Civil List. But this reserve has gradually been used in the past decade and is down to about 14 million pounds. It will be exhausted by 2012.

The Civil List came into being in 1760 when King George III settled an agreement with the government over the Crown Estate. All crown lands would be managed on behalf of the government with the revenue going to the public exchequer. In return, the monarch would receive a fixed, annual payment.

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