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State lawmaker argues he hasn't earned controversial salary increase

December 07, 2018 06:29 PM

ALBANY - The start of the new year will likely bring generous salary increases to all state lawmakers here in New York.

Some say the controversial pay raises are necessary, because they haven't happened in two decades. However, one new lawmaker says not so fast.

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Republican Assemblyman Chris Tague represents the 102nd District. He arrived here in May, after winning a special election and was re-elected last month. He says he hasn't earned this salary increase.

The four members of the New York State Special Compensation Committee voted to approve recommendations bumping state lawmaker salaries from $79,000 to $110,000 in the new year -- and then $10,000 a year more through 2021, reaching $130,000.

The governor's salary goes from $178,000 to $250,000. The lieutenant governor from $151,000 to $225,000. The state comptroller from $151,000 to $220,000.

The raises would be phased in over three years and this would make New York state lawmakers the highest paid in the nation.

They recommend placing a 15-percent cap on outside jobs for politicians who don't have fiduciary relationships with their clients.

Assemblyman Chris Tague says he retired from his other job in the private sector to do this full-time and being here just under one year, he doesn't think it's right for himself or other lawmakers.

"My honest opinion is I think it should have been done in a referendum that went before the people. You know, we're a government of, by and for the people and it seems like there's some people in Albany that think that they are the government and that they can just push things through," said Tague.

Those increases also include a 40-percent raise for Governor Cuomo and similar increases for the lieutenant governor, Comptroller DiNapoli and the attorney general salaries.

Members of the Compensation Committee will vote on this bill on Monday.

Credits

Jill Konopka & WNYT Staff

Copyright 2018 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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