Assembly Speaker Karen Bass
The Assembly’s top legislative leaders have rescinded pay raises for more than 100 staffers. The move comes after several news outlets reported the roughly five percent pay hikes.
With the state facing a new deficit – and many state workers being furloughed, 550-thousand dollars in pay raises for some staffers didn’t go over well. Democratic Assembly Speaker Karen Bass says they’ve become a distraction – and she’s canceling them:
“So when the people say that despite the cuts and savings we have achieved they still don’t approve of the timing or the appearance of these increases, then I certainly don’t want that to detract from the job we have to do.”
Bass says she was worried opponents to the May ballot measures would use the raises as a campaign tool. She supports the propositions, which lawmakers put on the ballot to help balance the budget. Assembly Republican Leader Mike Villines is on board with rescinding the raises. He says it was a mistake to grant them:
“We need to acknowledge and recognize that in an economy this tough, when people are hurting this bad, that seeing something like this, on our own staff, is not the right thing to do.”
Villines is also going a step further; He’s taking a five percent pay cut to show he’s “in the trenches with his troops.”