Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Despite a looming $2 billion dollar state budget shortfall, Pennsylvania lawmakers and judges will get raises next month. The raise comes in the form of a cost of living adjustment. Eric Epstein of the reform group Rock the Capitol says lawmakers should suspend what he calls "stealth pay raises." He says it is, “like stealing your children's savings bond. Right now everybody has to save, everybody has to sacrifice and it has to begin at the top.” Lieutenant Governor and Senate Pro Tem Joe Scarnati says He plans is to meet with the leaders of the three other legislative caucuses and then begin talks with the administration. He says, "I think we can put everything on the table and not take anything off of the table at this time. This is a critical time; this is probably one of the worst economic spirals downward in decades that Pennsylvania has seen."