Panel: Hike pay of state elected officials -- minus lawmakers - WNEM TV 5

Panel: Hike pay of state elected officials -- minus lawmakers

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A panel is recommending Michigan restore the pay of statewide elected officials to levels that were in place before a 10 percent cut was imposed in 2010.

The State Officers Compensation Commission said Friday the governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and secretary of state should receive 10 percent pay hikes. It also said Supreme Court justices should receive their first raise since 2002.

Pay levels ultimately are set by the Legislature, which has been reluctant to vote for pay hikes and previously cut the pay of legislators and others during the economic downturn.

The commission, which meets every two years, says pay should be boosted to attract quality public servants. It did not recommend a pay hike for legislators.

"I don't think it's right. It shouldn't happen, not at this point," said Larry Popowiecki, resident. "Unless I see any improvement in our roads and what have you, I don't think there should be any raises."

That mind set was shared by business owner Paul Rigda.

"I just don't think it's right when they do not want to give other people a raise, but they want one themselves," Rigda said.

The commission said since the economy has bounced back, now is the right time for the 10 percent increase. They said it would make up for cuts that happened back in 2010.

Rigda said he thinks there are other places the money could go.

"How about fixing some of the infrastructure? The bridges, the roads, the buildings. A lot of needy people that need this rather than them. They're already very rich millionaires," Rigda said.

It would be the first raise in 10 years for many officials, but Rigda is still not changing his mind.

"Not at all because there's facts like show that the common person has not had a raise in 21 years," Rigda said.

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