Gov. Kathy Hochul OK with further session on legislative pay increase — however not on bail

Gov. Kathy Hochul gave her blessing Friday for state lawmakers to return to Albany within the coming weeks for a special session on raising legislative pay — regardless of refusing for months to beckon them again to handle rising crime.

“I imagine they deserve a pay increase. They work extraordinarily arduous. It’s a year-round job. I’ve been with them many instances of their districts, and so they’ve labored very arduous and so they deserve it. It is as much as them on whether or not or not they wish to come again and make that efficient,” Hochul instructed reporters Friday.

The feedback comply with stories that some legislators are pushing for the Assembly and state Senate to reconvene earlier than the tip of the yr to move laws rising their pay from $110,000 to $130,000 yearly, in time for it to take impact in January.

Otherwise, lawmakers must wait till 2025 to get extra pay as a result of state guidelines bar them from elevating their very own salaries earlier than one other two-year time period begins.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie has not dominated out a particular session this December to lift legislative pay.
James Keivom

Republicans expressed bewilderment that Democrats would present themselves the cash after ignoring requires months to reconvene the Legislature for a particular session dedicated to altering prison justice reforms accredited lately, together with controversial limits on money bail which were blamed for rising crime.

“At a time when New Yorkers can barely afford to make ends meet, with document inflation, & at a time when Dems refuse to handle the crime disaster plaguing out streets, it will be the peak of conceitedness & hubris to name us again to extend legislative pay,” Assemblyman Michael Lawler (R-Rockland), who received a seat in Congress final month, tweeted Friday amid the continued suspense about how Democrats may deal with the pay concern.

Hochul claimed during the gubernatorial campaign in opposition to Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Suffolk) that calling Democratic lawmakers again to Albany after their often scheduled session resulted in June wouldn’t have been productive contemplating their resistance to amending state bail legal guidelines.

Gov. Kathy Hochul said Friday she is OK with state lawmakers getting a pay raise.

Gov. Kathy Hochul mentioned Friday she is OK with state lawmakers getting a pay increase.
Matthew McDermott

“You convey again the particular session when the Legislature is keen and an settlement going into on sure adjustments. Otherwise, they gavel in, they gavel out. OK? That’s the truth. I’ve to cope with realities right here,” she mentioned.

State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers) and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx) didn’t present remark Friday.

A controversial commission empowered by the state Legislature to lift their pay determined in 2018 to lift salaries from $80,000 to $110,000 firstly of 2019 whereas proscribing how lawmakers may make earnings outdoors their day job.

But authorized challenges invalidated the restrictions on outdoors earnings whereas nixing a second pay increase to $130,000 per yr, which might make state lawmakers the highest-paid within the nation.

Some lawmakers have claimed that $110,000 per yr shouldn’t be sufficient cash contemplating rising costs and the sky-high prices of dwelling in New York City specifically, particularly contemplating extra profitable alternatives in the private and non-private sectors.

Stewart-Cousins with outstretched arms at a microphone
Andrea Stewart-Cousins has been quiet this week about whether or not she helps a particular session earlier than 2022 ends to offer lawmakers a $20,000 increase.
James Keivom

“You get what you pay for,” one legislator instructed The Post on Thursday in regards to the impact wage ranges have on the standard of lawmakers overseeing the state funds and necessary coverage issues.

But some lawmakers mentioned they don’t anticipate to be anyplace close to Albany this vacation season, although a pay increase may get accredited as soon as the often scheduled session begins in January, which might take impact firstly of 2025.

“The Speaker wouldn’t name us again for a pay increase solely. Not taking place. But he may take into account it with the Senate majority chief whereas in session however undoubtedly not a particular session only for that,” Assemblywoman Inez Dickens (D-Harlem) mentioned.

Heastie repeatedly used the phrase “at this second” whereas signaling to reporters on the state Capitol in Albany on Thursday that the state of affairs stays up within the air.

“I’ve not mentioned something about coming again for a pay increase at this second,” he mentioned earlier than including: “I imagine that legislators have to be compensated for the arduous work that they do. People don’t understand the sacrifice that they make being away from their households.”



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