One after another, the members of the House State Affairs Committee voted “Aye,” all 18 of them, on Rep. Darrell Bolz’ proposal to reject legislative pay raises this year. Bolz’ proposal also rejects all the changes in mileage and per diem expenses that a citizen committee had recommended this year. “What we are doing is rejecting all of these,” he told the panel this morning. The committee voted not only to introduce the measure, but to send it to 2nd Reading Calendar of the full House, which means it goes directly to the floor without a further hearing on the House side. It’ll save the state about $180,000 by foregoing raises or any other compensation boosts for lawmakers. “With the economic times, how can we take and ask state employees to take a hit with salary, and yet we’ve got ourselves a salary increase?” Bolz asked. “We’re in tough times. My belief is when you get in difficult times like this, you can’t ask some people to take all the hurt. Everybody has to hurt to get through the situation.”
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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