Pay raise is risky business for lawma...

Pay raise is risky business for lawmakers

There are 56 comments on the The Indianapolis Star story from Feb 4, 2007, titled Pay raise is risky business for lawmakers. In it, The Indianapolis Star reports that:

Indiana voters think their lawmakers get overly generous perks. Lawmakers hope to get their first base pay raise in 22 years.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at The Indianapolis Star.

Rick Lewis

United States

#22 Feb 4, 2007
Do they have the threat of having their job privatized like the rest of us state employees ? Every Job in the state is up for bid unless you work in the statehouse with Mitch. Oh, I'm sorry, Mitch is at the Super Bowl right now.
Bud Barton

Albion, IN

#23 Feb 4, 2007
I I feel so sorry for our underpaid
lawmakers,,boo hoo.
They don't into session until 1:00 PM
on Monday's and they leave for hom on
Fridays.That leave TUES WEDS THURS
to do their job which they do a poor
job.
They are in session for Approx. 90 days
at $137.00 a day. And they get $54.00
a day that they are not insession plus a pention mostly paid for by the taxpayers.and Free health insurance for
them and their family's.
How many of you would love to have a job like that and make that kind of
money?? we could all go t the Super Bowl.
Now that doesn't include the tickets
they get for Pacer games Colt's Games
and god know what eles they get from
lobbist.
We the taxpayers work our Butts off
for $6.00 to $10.00 an hr 6 to 7 days
aweek so these guys can set on their
butts and cry they don't make enough.
Who works for who?
Wake up people tell these jerks that
they are overpaid now and we are tied
of them doing what they want and not what we want.
Don't we have any Guts any more.
No wonder so many want to run for Senator Or a Represenative.
And they bicker about raising the MIN WAGE ???
Fuzzy Math some place
You can sit there and complain or you can do something about it
WAKE UP!!!!!!!!!! Is this the Roman Empire?
Pip Dyer

Naperville, IL

#24 Feb 4, 2007
Reduce the $4 for $1 that they contribute to their pension. Take away the life time health insurance coverage. After all many of us don't have a pension or health insurance. Maybe then they would begin to understand some of the issues we face.
robert

Arlington Heights, IL

#25 Feb 4, 2007
robert wrote:
Better yet make it a LAW that if you hold elected office you cannot run or hold elected office for 5 years.Than maybe we can git rid of these career type politicians once and for all.....
ITS ME again ,this subject really errrrks me !!! They want more money for a so called (elected,servants) job with benefits after leaving office. Everyone else has too work for 25 or 30 years or more to get benefits and than have to pay an arm and a leg for.. Than every year we have to pay more for the benefits and we get less coverage, and these elected officles have the nerve too ask for MORE.. AND they do nothing to earn it,they make everything (when in office ) A BIG MESS just to get their names in the papers so they can get reelected.. AND continue the mess PEOPLE WE NEED TOO WAKE UP !!!!!
Civil Servant

Schuylkill Haven, PA

#26 Feb 4, 2007
MIchael wrote:
How many legislators also work for the state in their other life?...
None.
bounce bauer

United States

#28 Feb 4, 2007
Get that goof out of the statehouse. His calling the average salary a "blank" lie is proof he's a goof.
Civil Servant

Schuylkill Haven, PA

#27 Feb 4, 2007
robert wrote:
Better yet make it a LAW that if you hold elected office you cannot run or hold elected office for 5 years.Than maybe we can git rid of these career type politicians once and for all.....
Sorry, the thought of a brand new bunch every session would be a terrible idea. Like it or not some experience is required.

For a good example of this look at the miserable failures in many state agencies after Mitch the Blade cleansed them of experienced employees to put young Republicans to work.
pat should know

United States

#29 Feb 4, 2007
Bauer might want to know that my salary is also eaten up by food and lodging. And I don't have taxpayers footing my insurance and retirement. What a jerk.
Jim

United States

#30 Feb 4, 2007
This bunch is unbelieveable. Forty thousand plus for a part time job and all the perks they want. How about the Super Bowl deal on tickets they got? My Rep is a school teacher who the Corporation pays for his sub while he is in session. No wonder he ran for the job. I work for the State and in my 457 plan( deferred compensation)the State kicks in $15.00 a pay. This is a far cry of $4.00 for every $1.00 they contribute to the pension plan. Enough is enough.
Had it with politicians

United States

#31 Feb 4, 2007
I am a state employee and have seen our paychecks eaten away by higher health-care payments and lower that the cost of living pay raises. If I was as productive as the State Legistature under the Governors "Pay for Performance" plan, I would get a zero (0)% pay increase or be fired.
If the legistature wants to be paid like other state employees, then make them follow the rules and regulation state employees are bound by. Same "ETHICS" code, same "Health Care", same "Pay for Performance" criteria.

Also, Indianapolis Star, I didn't get an offer for "at face value" Colts Super Bowl tickets. It would be nice to see one of your investigative news reporters come up with a list of who actually paid for their "at cost" tickets and went to Miami.

Tired of politicians and their smoke and mirrors legistation and make them accountable for their productivity or lack of. You "Indianapolis Star" could help the public do this by more reports on who is and who is not, doing their job.
Jeff M

Bellevue, KY

#32 Feb 4, 2007
Our lawmakers are not overpaid. However, their pay system should be open to public review.

Expenses should be paid according to the distance traveled to their sessions. Members within 50 miles of the statehouse should not be paid lodging. Those outside of 50 miles should get lodging and milage expenses.

The base pay should be raised and any future raises should be tied to state employee raises. Their pension and health care should also be the same plan as other state employees.

We have to compensate people for the time they take away from their businesses or jobs. Contrary to what some people think, most small business owners are not rich.

Or, it may be time to consider a full-time legislature. Again their compensation package tied to other state employees. The base pay could be the average of our bordering states. This could allow someone other than a business owner or retiree to run for office. Term limits could be applied as well.

Since: Dec 06

Indianapolis

#33 Feb 4, 2007
I will take the 154 a day and you can keep the rest.
bruce

AOL

#34 Feb 4, 2007
well senator long...if youve read the previous 23 posts you will see just how risky it is.....there is one good thing that the great decider has done for this country...president bush and his administration was entirely responsible for common ordinary citizens understanding the need for governmental oversight...you guys solve one damn problem this state is facing...and maybe there will be a pay raise.
Teresa

Bloomington, IN

#35 Feb 4, 2007
The only risky business for law makers,is for them to continue keeping 13% of the citizens of Indiana living below poverty level!!!!!! 2 years ago I had a good job at Bloomington's GE plant. Today I'm part of Indiana's 13%.The law makers need to help revive the "American Dream" ideal that we all believe in. Stop worrying about the wealthy.

Since: Dec 06

Indianapolis

#36 Feb 4, 2007
opps let me correct that. I will take the $154. a day plus the health ins. Then you can keep the rest.
Dem-Ouster

United States

#37 Feb 4, 2007
Mark wrote:
Politicians set their own pay scales and raises? I wish that was how it was for me , as well. I think their job is the only one where there are placed in a position to determine their well being. HMMMMMMM sounds rather nice. Clean house next election...Yes, I'm a democrat.
Gee, I couldn't tell it! Living in Carmel, I'll bet you are one of few.
j doe

Tucson, AZ

#38 Feb 4, 2007
The people elected these legislators and they should have a say in their remuneration...enact a law requiring this issue to be voted on by the electorate. This would help settle the issue of self-serving politicos rewarding themselves at tax payer expense.
Wally

Cincinnati, OH

#39 Feb 4, 2007
Pip Dyer wrote:
Reduce the $4 for $1 that they contribute to their pension. Take away the life time health insurance coverage. After all many of us don't have a pension or health insurance. Maybe then they would begin to understand some of the issues we face.
PIP - If you would actually read the story, you'll see that getting rid of the 1/4 pension match and lifetime insurance benefit is exactly what they are planning to do. Both of those "perks" were enacted under different leaders - the free forever health insurance benefit was signed into existence by Sen. Garton and Speaker Gregg, both of whom are now gone. The current legislature is trying to make it right - give them a chance.
Wally

Cincinnati, OH

#40 Feb 4, 2007
pat should know wrote:
Bauer might want to know that my salary is also eaten up by food and lodging. And I don't have taxpayers footing my insurance and retirement. What a jerk.
Is your salary eaten up by lodging in South Bend AND Indianapolis both, or just one home??
A Thinker

Marysville, OH

#42 Feb 4, 2007
Indiana’s median household income trailed the United States by about $2,250, according to the 2005 American Community Survey (ACS) from the U.S. Census Bureau. The median household income for Hoosiers was $43,993 for the 12-month reference period. Meanwhile, the U.S. median household income came in at $46,242 (which means that half of the incomes were above that mark, and half were below it).

Nearly 498,700 Indiana households had incomes between $50,000 and $74,999, accounting for 20 percent of all households (see Figure 1). The fewest households in both the state and the nation were found in the top income category; less than 40,800 Hoosier households (and less than 3.4 million U.S. households) earned $200,000 or more.

The governor might consider agreeing not to veto a modest increase, but only if legislators first adopt stringent new ethics laws prohibiting public officials from taking expensive gifts from lobbyists and others.

Currently lobbyists can spend virtually anything on legislators or other public officials. Lobbyists or public officials don't even have to report it unless it amounts to $250 per day. Voters called for new laws that would require anything to be reported, even a cup of coffee.

As a registered voter, I suggest that there needs to be a very low cap on the cumulative amount a public official can take in gifts from a company, lobbyist or other entity during a year -- perhaps $100 a year total. And, I suggest that public officials and lobbyists have to report every dime.

If legislators would pass tough ethics laws tightly limiting what lobbyists can spend on them and other public officials, perhaps a case could be made that they need a modest pay increase. But absent such ethics reform, they should get precisely the pay increase they deserve -- nothing.

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