Tags: Andrew Cuomo | New York | legislators | pay raise | outside income | ethics

NY Legislators Push Gov. Cuomo to Approve Pay Raise

Image: NY Legislators Push Gov. Cuomo to Approve Pay Raise
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By    |   Tuesday, 20 Jan 2015 11:02 AM

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is establishing a commission to study giving state politicians pay raises, but the same commission will also look at restricting outside income earned by the same politicians.

Legislators in the Empire State earn $79,500 per year for their part-time work, but there has not been an increase in wages for State Senate and Assembly members since 1999, The New York Times reported.

While members of the New York Legislature asked Cuomo in December to sign off on the raise they were asking for, he said that a raise would come on condition of his ethics reforms proposals, which they had rejected.

However, lawmakers contend that they have satisfied several of the New York governor's demands and frustration is mounting in the Legislature.

According to The Times, the commission Cuomo is planning to establish will be announced during his State of the State address Wednesday. But it is doubtful the announcement will relieve frustration, since he still is pursuing the same ethics reforms.

One of those proposed reforms seeks to address outside income of state legislators, especially when that income is made with those who do business with the Empire State.

For example, Speaker of the Assembly Sheldon Silver, a Democrat, allegedly earned at least $650,000 from his work as an attorney, and he is currently under investigation by the U.S. attorney's office in New York for allegedly doing business with a law firm that is pursuing reductions in New York City real estate taxes.

The problem is that under current rules, little more than the source of that income must be disclosed, rather than the nature of the work done for the income.

The commission being proposed by the New York governor would include three members — one appointed by the governor, one by the Assembly and one by the Senate.

The group would meet every four years and would establish a cap on how much a legislator could make in outside income as well as be required to provide more information on the source of that income.

In addition, the commission would also establish pay rates for those who have outside income and those who don't.

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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is establishing a commission to study giving state politicians pay raises, but the same commission will also look at restricting outside income earned by the same politicians.
Andrew Cuomo, New York, legislators, pay raise, outside income, ethics
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2015-02-20
Tuesday, 20 Jan 2015 11:02 AM
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