WXXI Local Stories
Wed December 1, 2010
At the Capitol, Talk Once Again of Legislative Pay Raises
By Karen DeWitt
Albany, New York – State lawmakers have not received a pay raise in 11 years, and now Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo says he's not ruling out raising the lawmakers' salaries.
Talk of a pay raise for lawmakers has increased at the Capitol since the Senate and Assembly approved the creation of a commission to look at raising judicial salaries. Neither judges nor legislators have received a pay raise in a decade. In the past, judicial and legislative salaries have been tied together. Legislative leaders deny they are planning to pass a bill to increase their salaries, Senate Leader John Sampson says the economic climate is not right for that.
Governor elect Andrew Cuomo says while there's no deal in the works, and he's "heard no talk" of one, he would not close the door on the issue entirely once he takes office.
"Next year, we would look at it," Cuomo said.
In the past, governors have received something they dearly wanted in exchange for agreeing to sign a pay raise bill. Former Governor George Pataki got permission to set up charter schools around the state when he agreed to the last pay raise in 1999.