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To the editor:
Don't shed any tears for how much your State Senator or Assembly member will now earn. State employees earn between $28,000 to $102,500, averaging $54,500. They have to show up for work full time year around. No time to hold down a second job.
Contrast this with the recent pay raise of $32,000 for members of the State Legislature. This raised their annual base pay from $110,000 to $142,000. Adding insult to injury, they earn double or more than what the average constituent does for a part time job.
They also have day-to-day meal accounts along with reimbursement for overnight hotel, travel to and from Albany and other perks ordinary citizens can only dream about. When legislative sessions take place, they run Tuesday to Thursday. Most weeks Albany is closed. This affords many the opportunity to hold down a second job practicing law or some other profession.
The legislature was in session just 62 days between Jan. 5 to June 4, 2022. They found the time to return for one day, in December, to vote themselves a pay raise. No time to deal with modifications to recent bail reform laws, which have had an impact in growing crime.
There is no draft to serve. Members voluntarily ran for public office fully aware of the hours and perks. If they don't like the compensation, they should resign and try working for a living like their constituents. There are millions of New Yorkers who are just as qualified and would love to hold legislative office.
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