“This is simply common sense,” Reis said. “Every week, my office receives correspondence with gut wrenching stories of people facing cuts to assistance with their energy bills, their home health care, and their child care services. I’m proud today to join most of my colleagues to say that a pay raise for politicians in the face of the current budget situation would be outrageous and unfair.”
For weeks, House Republicans have pushed to have their own bill, HB 4225, eliminating legislator pay raises brought to the House floor for a vote. While that bill sits in the Rules committee, Reis says he is glad to have had the opportunity to vote today on HB 576.
“On the Republican side of the aisle, my colleagues and I have been warning for months now that the continuing appropriation for the legislature would contain a pay raise for legislators,” Reis said. “Those warnings of course fell on the deaf ears of Speaker Madigan. Despite their utter failure on several levels, Democrats in the legislature believe they deserve a raise. I don’t share that belief and that is why we have worked so hard to block legislator pay raises. It was only after weeks of public pressure and negative news coverage that the Speaker and the politicians he controls in the House decided a pay raise for themselves was a bad idea.”
HB 576 passed the House on Wednesday and now heads to the Senate for consideration. The Senate must pass the bill and the Governor must sign it for legislative pay raises to be blocked.