Louisiana Lawmakers Could Vote to Quadruple Their Pay
Truth be told, there's probably no one reading this right now that is making the same salary they made over forty years ago, back in 1980.
However, that can't be said about Louisiana Legislators, as their annual salary of $16,800 has not been increased in forty three years.
But, in an article from the Louisiana Radio Network, we learn that Gretna Louisiana Representative Joseph Marino has presented a bill that would nearly quadruple that pay.
If Marino's bill passes, in January 2024, Louisiana legislators would see an increase of $43,000 annually, taking their annual pay up to $59,800. To justify his position for the proposal of the bill, Marino says that comparing salaries from 1980, the same part-time position which paid $16,800 then, would pay more than $60,000 in today's economy.
Even though Marino is not running for re-election himself, he feels the increase is needed to encourage more qualified individuals to run for office outside of those who are retired or independently wealthy.
Marino said, “If you tell them that the pay is $16,800 and you’re going to be tied up in Baton Rouge anywhere from three to six months, and that’s when you’re in session. It’s cost prohibited for people to do this job.”
The demands on a legislator's time are pretty extensive . Along with the annual regular legislative session, lawmakers are also required to come to the capitol for special sessions. In fact, Marino says that in the time since he was elected in 2016, he's been called to Baton Rouge a total of 19 times.
Marino contends that it’s a part-time job that not everyone can fiscally perform due to the demands.
On one hand, most can see the disparity in the pay scale that has gone unchanged for such a lengthy period, but on the other hand, as our country appears gripped by a crippling economy, you might ask, "But why do this right now?"
I guess we will all soon see where this one lands.