ABCC leaders received 14 per cent pay rises last year, while agency staff recevied just 1 per cent on average.

An FOI request has revealed Australian Building and Construction Commission one of the building watchdog’s executive salaries rose from $199,000 to $222,500, while two went from $185,000 to $210,000 in 2016-17.

All seven of the agency’s senior executives now take home over $210,000.

The ABCC executive pay rises of 12 per cent and 13.5 per cent came in the same year as a new enterprise agreement for staff ended a three-year pay freeze.

The new 2017 agreement front-loaded a 3 per cent pay increase, but comes out to a 6 per cent pay rise over three years - just 1 per cent per year from 2014 to 2020.

The ABCC says its senior executive salaries (SES) are “in line with other agencies”.

The individual contracts were updated after a review and restructure that reduced the number of SES staff from eight to seven.

The Turnbull government's hardline bargaining policy means the public sector is receiving pay rise of no more than 2 per cent a year with backpay.

It states that pay rises for senior executives should be consistent with this, but ABCC executive pay rises are up to seven times wage growth and inflation levels.

Senior executives in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet saw similar pay rises of around 12 per cent in 2015-16, with their salaries climbing to almost $350,000.

Community Public Sector Union secretary Nadine Flood has described the the ABCC's double-digit pay rises  as “an outrage”.

“How can the government possibly justify giving a juicy pay rise to an ABCC exec who's already on $200,000 a year when the pay of a working mum in Centrelink was frozen for more than three years?” she told Fairfax reporters.

“Australia desperately needs a boost to wages growth, but the way to do that is through the pay packets of average earners, not a fortunate few.”