JACKSONVILLE –State Representative C.D. Davidsmeyer (R-Jacksonville) today criticized the state budget which grants an effective pay raise to legislators while still holding back on wages already owed to state employees.
“It is a slap in the face to taxpayers who have seen state spending expand and their tax burden continue to grow,” Davidsmeyer said. “The last thing we should be doing is raising the pay for legislators who have failed to address Illinois’ financial problems.”
The budget which passed the House last week does not renew the requirement that members of the House and Senate take one unpaid furlough day each month. The result of this omission is that legislators will see their pay increase beginning on July 1.
Davidsmeyer voted against the pay raise and went a step further, co-sponsoring legislation to re-impose the furlough days on legislators. He is also sponsoring legislation which would cut the pay of legislators if the state does not reduce its backlog of unpaid bills.
“How can we look state employees in the eye and say that we are not going to fully fund the back wages they have been owed for years, but we are going to give legislators a raise,” Davidsmeyer asked. “It’s just wrong.”
The pay raise legislation is Senate Bill 274. Davidsmeyer’s bill to re-impose the furloughs on legislators is House Bill 6235, while his bill to cut legislator pay if the backlog is not reduced is House Bill 5434. He is also sponsoring House Bill 5451 to fully pay the court-ordered back wages owed to state employees.