Some Rhode Island Lawmakers are Turning Down Pay Hike

Jul 29, 2013

Nine state senators and one state rep are turning down an increase in their annual legislative pay, which is mandated by a cost of living provision in the state constitution.

The raise will boost lawmakers pay by $307 to $14,947. Democratic State Senator Adam Satchell of West Warwick turned his raise down, saying he doesn’t feel like he deserves it after one year in office.

Nine lawmakers so far have turned down an annual cost of living raise.
Credit file / RIPR

“I just thought it was the right thing to do. I certainly didn’t run for office to make money,” said Satchell, “it certainly wasn’t a financial decision on my part. You know, there a lot of people who aren’t getting raises and haven’t gotten raises for a long time.”

Most of the lawmakers rejecting the pay hike so far are Republicans in the state Senate. House Speaker Gordon Fox and Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed earn double the pay of other lawmakers.

If each of the other 111 state lawmakers rejected the raise, that would add up to about $34,000.

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