Thursday, August 11, 2016
HERE & THERE COLUMN
State Lawmakers Want 47% Pay Increases
The commission studying whether to give New York State legislators a 47% pay hike should instead demand that lawmakers pass real ethics reform before they receive any more money.
So if our legislators get that 47% pay hike New York State would receive the great honor of being the highest paid Legislature in our nation.
Using the new pay formula Governor Cuomo's salary would jump from $179,000 to $263,000.
Lawmakers would increase their salaries from $79,500 to $116,900..... not bad for part-time jobs.
To insulate themselves from an expected public outcry, legislative leaders are claiming that the commission (an independent panel) can do what it wants....even though three members were appointed by the governor.
Opposition is coming from a number of of new legislative candidates who say they oppose this proposes salary increase until "New York State is again the Empire State instead of the Exodus State."
Others have called for a 12-year term limit to eliminate career politicians.
104th Assembly District candidate Bill Banuchi said, "the New York State Legislature's attempts to increase their own income by 47% is clear evidence of the criminal enterprise our state government has become and underscores the need to clean house and replace money-grubbing career politicians with a citizen government that will serve New Yorkers as our founders intended."
Banuchi, from Newburgh, in his comments about the proposed legislative salary increase added that "the explanation for raising incomes is completely irrational," and "the truth is that we would be better served by individuals who do not seek selfish gain or a career in politics, but rather sensed a calling to serve."
The seven-member pay commission, where the pay hire was floated in a July meeting, was created by the Legislature and Gov. Cuomo to recommend raises for lawmakers and state officials.
The panel's recommendations are due by Nov. 15 and would automatically become law unless legislators vote to reject them. The raises would take effect January 1, 2017.
Has the state's economic barometer improved that much to validate this type of increase?
Time for the folks to weight in on this issue and let your feelings be known.