(The Center Square) — Even in the current inflationary moment, Pennsylvania legislators receive automatic pay raises. A proposed bill could put an end to that, along with raises for judges and executive officials.

Senate Bill 1007, introduced state Sen. Doug Mastriano, R-Chambersburg, who’s also the Republican gubernatorial nominee, would remove annual cost-of-living increases for legislators, judges, the governor and lieutenant governor, along with the heads of executive departments.

The increases are tied to the consumer price index to adjust for inflation.

“As the citizens of Pennsylvania struggle to make ends meet in the face of historic inflation and soaring energy costs, these automatic pay raises are indefensible,” Mastriano said in a statement. “SB 1007 is vital to build trust with the taxpayers, particularly in the face of a worsening economic crisis.”

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Legislators don’t have to accept the pay raise, but the vast majority do. As reported by SpotlightPA, very few legislators return funds.

“Just six state lawmakers — Sens. Kristin Phillips-Hill (R., York) and Pat Stefano (R., Fayette), and Reps. Greg Rothman (R., Cumberland), Frank Ryan (R., Lebanon), Tim Bonner (R., Mercer), and Patty Kim (D., Dauphin) — have given back at least a portion of their annual pay raises in the last four years,” Stephen Caruso wrote.

Generally, efforts to curtail pay raises may gain support, but die in committee or fail to advance. Mastriano’s bill was introduced in January, but still sits in the State Government Committee.

Pennsylvania legislators earn a base pay of $95,432 and earn more than all other state legislators except for California and New York. They can also receive reimbursement for travel mileage and a per diem of $178/day for expenses related to official business.

“Many of the men and women in our commonwealth’s workforce do not receive the same type of automatic annual pay raise tied to inflation,” Mastriano wrote in his legislative memo. “As public servants, we should not receive special treatment when it comes to our salary.”

Anthony Hennen is a reporter for The Center Square. Previously, he worked for Philadelphia Weekly and the James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal. He is managing editor of Expatalachians, a journalism project focused on the Appalachian region.

This article was republished with permission from The Center Square.

4 thoughts on “Bill to end automatic pay raises for top state officials stuck in committee”

  1. When B&L realizes they have to write *SOMETHING* about Mastriano but don’t want to say anything about his conspiracy theories about the 2020 election, his completely out of touch position on outlawing abortions even in cases of rape and incest, his unbelievably unpopular opposition to gay marriage, or his role aiding and abetting the attack on our capitol on 1/6.

    The only reason any GOP members are in favor of this bill is that their official salary is irrelevant when they really make their $ from dark money and “gifts” from special interest groups like the Koch Brothers, Peter Theil, and other ruling class elite lobbyists.

    1. The same is true for the folks on the other side of the aisle as well. I heard that it was so cold in Harrisburg last winter that somebody saw a state legislator on the street with his hands in his own pockets.

    2. Ha ha – have you heard of Soros, 1630 Fund, Arabella …. etc, etc, etc. You’re probably with one of them to even be writing a ridiculous comment like that. A big progressive marxist tactic is to scream as loud as you can about what you’re actually doing but assign it to your political opposition – see Biden’s Philadelphia hateful, vitriolic, divisive, strangely lit speech last week for reference.

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