Deb Billado: Democratic lawmakers seek big pay raise

Editor’s note: This commentary is by Deb Billado, chairwoman of the Vermont GOP.

As if the tax-and-spend desires of Democrats under the Golden Dome weren’t apparent enough, now these same lawmakers have introduced two bills to raise their own pay. Yes, you heard that right. Even though we’re one of the highest taxed states in the nation. Even though many Vermonters are struggling to make ends meet. And even though we’re facing a more than $70 million budget gap, Vermont’s Democrat legislators want their own pay raised, and for you to foot the bill.

Deborah Billado, chair of the Vermont GOP

The first bill, H.614, introduced by Rep. Jim McCullough (D-Williston) would boost the pay of the Speaker, the Senate President Pro Tem, and committee chairs by 20 percent! At a time when Vermonters’ paychecks are barely keeping up with inflation, it is morally and economically outrageous for liberal leadership to get a 20 percent raise.

The second bill introduced by Rep. Lucy Rogers (D-Waterville) would pay all 180 legislators another $5,000 a year each — or a 37 percent raise. These proposals are insulting to everyday Vermonters struggling with the cost of living. Mind you that the pay the legislators do receive does not include the per diem payments they receive for housing, food and mileage — amounts which are not insubstantial.

This isn’t the first time Vermont Democrats have played these games. In 2015, then-Representative (and now senator) Allison Clarkson (D-Woodstock) proposed allowing legislators to bill the state for the amount of time they spent meeting with constituents, including answering their phone calls, emails and letters. The name “public servants” suggests that legislators should not be motivated for money, but apparently Vermont Democrats are.

There are things you can do get in touch with your legislators and tell them that you are dead-set against such increases. The next thing to do is to pass this message on to like minded people. Plan to run for office as a Republican in the House or Senate from your district, and, at a minimum, be sure to vote for fiscally minded Republicans in November and support those candidates that do run. It really is time for a change in Montpelier. We cannot afford these big spenders any longer.

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8 thoughts on “Deb Billado: Democratic lawmakers seek big pay raise

  1. On top of all the irresponsible activities going on in Montpelier this one takes the cake. As long as the folks are willing to put up with these shanagins nothing will change. These folks spend our hard earned tax dollars with no thought to accountability. It’s as if tax dollars came from their private piggy bank. If the voters do not rise up and say ENOUGH at the ballot box, NOTHING will change.

  2. On the pay aspect no legislator showing income over the VT average should get any pay…
    they can afford to do it for their duty…or receive what service personnel receive for duty to their
    country…getting a raise for making VT UN-affordable for the citizens is ridiculous….

  3. Article 9, Vermont Constitution: … previous to any law being made to raise a tax, the purpose for which it is to be raised ought to appear evident to the Legislature to be of more service to community than the money would be if not collected.

    • I 100% agree with your suggestion and would only add they be required to remove a
      worthless program/bill that no longer benefits who it was suppose to..

  4. The Montpelier crowd already can get money five ways, three of which is devious and hidden.
    1) regular salaries
    2) Pr diem pay, It’s known they can pad their “expenses” as has been reported in Seven Days. The guy was proud of it and smiling. They don’t have to produce records of expenses (receipts).
    3) Could be in a position to get insider news for stock trading as is in Congress, being legal for them, not the commoner.
    4) Lobbyist kick backs. “here’s something to help you furnish your house, etc, do me a favor, I’ll do you a favor.” People know it happens.
    5) Free medical, etc.

    Now it’s being proposed for the heads of committees to get a pay raise. It might be OK as I suspect there will be a lot of infighting and head butting to get to be a committee chair, perhaps maim themselves in their greed to get more taxpayer money. Government positions are some of the most lucrative in VT. They tax people to death, so they have a lot of money to grab. And many legislators have outside jobs / work. They ain’t hurting but feel sorry for themselves as they are “public servants”, right.

  5. So the state is in debt, unfunded liabilities, taxes up the wazoo, but the legislators in
    2020 believe they need a pay raise, I guess things are different in government, as in
    the real world you are paid for performance ?? what am I missing ??

    In the real world, they would all be fired……… maybe it’s time Vermont !!

    Arrogance at it’s best…………… what a pitty.

    • Oh sure how much of my SS check do they want? How much of what little I earn do they think is theirs?

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