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Panel suggests raising pay of state elected officials - but not lawmakers

May 19, 2017

Credit Flickr user Pictures of Money / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

Some state officials might be getting a raise for the first time in years. That’s if the legislature adopts recommendations made by the State Officers Compensation Commission Friday.

The commission recommends a ten percent pay increase for state Supreme Court Justices. Their salaries have been frozen for over a decade. It also recommends the governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, and secretary of state go back to their salaries from before 2010, when they got a pay cut.

James Hallan is on the committee. He said Michigan needs to keep the salaries for elected officials competitive, otherwise you risk only getting candidates that are very wealthy or very young and trying to make a name for themselves.

“So you miss a sweet spot of people that have some experience in the business or community. And so we’re trying to recognize that,” he said.

“Clearly they’re public servants, they recognize that they’re not going to be paid the same as the private sector,” Hallan continued. “But they’ve got families, they have a duty to be fairly compensated. They do good work for the state and it’s our obligation to recognize that and as fiduciaries make a recommendation.”

The proposed salary increases would not take effect until after Governor Rick Snyder leaves office. But he said the recommendations are reasonable.

 

“With respect to the justices, we want to have the best courts possible so I think it’s important that we compensate people accordingly,” he said.

The commission did not recommend pay increases for lawmakers.