JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – HCR 3 and 4, sponsored by Rep. Jay Barnes , R-Jefferson City, disapproving the salary recommendations of the Missouri Citizens’ Commission on Compensation for Elected Officials, was passed by the House today by the necessary two-thirds majority to reject the proposed pay increase.
The Missouri Citizens’ Commission on Compensation for Elected Officials is charged with the responsibility of setting pay for statewide elected officials, legislators and judges. The commission is constitutionally required to make salary recommendations after public hearings and recommended there be an 8 or 10% pay increase over fiscal years 2016 and 2017.
The commission recommended a pay increase for General Assembly members of 11% – a salary increase of $4,000 per year. Further for General Assembly members, they recommended the per diem be raised by $26 a day and mileage raised by $0.19 per mile.
The increases would be between $9,000 and $22,000 for statewide officials.
Although the salary structure for judges would remain the same – a percentage of what federal judges earn – the salaries of judges would increase by about 1 percent for 2016 under the commission’s report, with judges getting raises ranging from about $1,300 to $1,800 depending on their position. Judges would get an additional, but as yet undetermined, increase in 2017 if federal judges get another pay hike.
The resolution states that “the state has many other priorities for appropriating money in the budget that are far more important than the salary increases recommended by the Commission.”
The senate has until February 1 to pass the resolution disapproving of the pay increase. If both chambers do not pass the resolution, the pay increase will take effect. Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard shied away from promising to reporters that he would bring the bill to the floor ahead of the deadline.
Currently, representatives are paid $35,915 and senators make $35,915 plus their per diem and mileage. Leadership is paid additional salary.
Statewide official pay ranges from $86,484 (lt. gov) to $133,821 (governor). Other than the attorney general, who makes just over $116,000, other statewide officials make just over $107,000.
Rachael Herndon was the editor at The Missouri Times and also produced This Week in Missouri Politics, published Missouri Times Magazine, and co-hosted the #MoLeg podcast. She joined The Missouri Times in 2014, returning to political reporting after working as a campaign and legislative staffer.
Rachael studied at the University of Missouri – Columbia. She lives in Jefferson City with her husband, Brandon, and their two children.