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Surprise! Senate won’t vote on pay raise rejection

Friday, May 23, 2008

* This is no surprise. Sen. Hendon won’t bring the pay raise rejection legislation to the Senate floor for a vote

Sen. Rickey Hendon (D-Chicago), chairman of the Senate Rules Committee, told Republican senators who asked for a chance to vote the pay raises up or down that he won’t allow those measures—or any legislation that doesn’t deal with the budget—to advance by the May 31 adjournment deadline.

* Sen. Susan Garrett (D-Lake Forest), who opposes the pay raise, claimed that Senate Presidet Emil Jones and other SDem leaders “promised” there would be a vote on the issue. Without a vote in both chambers to kill them, the pay raises will automatically take effect after 30 session days from the date the plan was submitted…

Jones, who told reporters earlier this month that “I need a pay raise,” denied he promised a vote on the raises. Despite backing the raises, Jones claimed he is “fighting like heck” to get Hendon to let the pay-raise resolution come up for a vote.

* I’m sure he’s fighting hard to get that pay raise resolution called. And then there’s this bit of schtick…

Jones “is not chairman of rules, he is president of the Senate,” Hendon, a strong Jones ally, told the committee. “And he can do a lot of things that he wants to do. But as long as I am chairman of rules, I am going to make a lot of the decisions here.”

* Somewhat related…

* Officials resigned to ‘bare-bones spending

* GOP Senators storm out of budget committee

* Brady: Budget is a sham

* State delay may leave schools in the lurch

* Senate panel advances pension borrowing plan

* Pension idea advances

* Editorial: Don’t trust state government - Illinois needs a capital bill, but we doubt that leaders will spend money fairly, honestly

* Comptroller Hynes raps gov’s fiscal policies - Education budget ’stagnating, shrinking’

* U of I Faces $17 Million Budget Gap

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - cynically anonymous - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:25 am:

    I always thought that our system of government was set up with checks and balances so no one individual or branch had all the power. Apparently that’s not the case in Illinois. So sad.

  2. - Disgusted - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:28 am:

    I would like to know who is on the Compensation Review Board. They must be some super-secret society with decoder rings and such, since we never hear who they are, where they operate from and who appoints them. The convoluted way in which pay raises are given to the House and Senate affects our pockets, so the public has the right to know who is foisting this on us.

  3. - Anonymous - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:31 am:

    There may be a small silver lining in this. Since the pay raises don’t take effect until 30 “session days” after the plan is submitted, the members (for appearance’s sake) may try to avoid using up those 30 session days until after the November election, thereby preventing a marathon overtime summer session like we saw last year.

  4. - ChiCountryGuy - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:42 am:

    Chicago - Run by Chicago democrats. Condition: Horrible.

    Cook County - Run by Chicago democrats. Condition: Horrible.

    State Gov’t - Run by Chicago democrats. Condition: Even worse than Cook County and Chicago combined.

    Presidential Candidate Barak Obama - Chicago Democrat.

    And Senator Obama wants our vote for President?

  5. - Ghost - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:47 am:

    Hendon is about as inepedent from Jones as is Jones Kidney.

    Wat bother me most about hendon and Jones, is they seem to perceiev the average voter to have very little on the ball to see thorugh such a tranparent stage play.

    Besides the obvious falsity, the reality is Jones pulled halverson for not doing what he wanted, so there is no reason to beleive he would not do the same with Hendon is Hendon was doing anything Jones did not want.

    Jones 1
    Stringless puppets 0

  6. - Jaded - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:48 am:

    You know the Sen Repub and Garrett’s schtick is growing almost as old and the Hendon Jones Keystone Cop routine. If they don’t want the pay raise, have a press conference telling everyone they plan to donate the extra cash to the March of Dimes, and be done with it.

    Also, the comp review board is made up of 12 non government non lobbyist private citizens appointed by the 4 legislative leaders (3 each). The Legislative Research Unit will have a list of the members. If for some reason they won’t tell you, call your legislator, they have to give a list to them.

  7. - Cassandra - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:56 am:

    It’s my recollection that Blago did propose some minor changes to reduce future pension debt by trimming the state’s cheap and lavish pension benefits for incoming state workers but the legislature wouldn’t go along. They were likely fearful of losing “campaign contributions” from state employee unions. And apparently the general public wasn’t interested enough to weigh in–even though an increasingly small minority can look forward to pensions of their own. Guess they don’t mind paying for pensions for others instead of putting the money towards their own retirements.

    In light of the venality of the legislature and the indifference of the electorate, we can hardly criticize the new pension borrowing plan, which is an effort, however flawed, to deal practically with a situation about which we all had plenty of warning.

  8. - wordslinger - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 10:20 am:

    Silly little comedy between Hendon and Jones. I don’t think it can really be spun successfully, but it appears that Jones would like Hendon to take the heat on this one. Silly, but interesting.

  9. - Commonsense in Illinois - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 10:23 am:

    That Ricky Hendon…isn’t he just a hoot?

  10. - Sir Reel - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 10:25 am:

    I know the pay raises are drop in the bucket in the overall scheme of things, but I’m tired of those who say legislators who oppose the raises can just donate theirs’ to charity. The fact remains that taxpayers have to pay regardless of the end result. Other needs won’t be met because funds will go to raises/donations. And remember, these raises up the cost for all future years.

  11. - Squideshi - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 10:37 am:

    Two pieces of information to which more of the public needs better access:

    1. The current and historical salaries of their elected representatives.

    2. Information on how the relationships REALLY work behind the scenes when it comes to the House and Senate Rules Committees.

  12. - Question - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 10:54 am:

    Can we vote to change the budget process to every two years if we have a con-con?

  13. - Dan S, a Voter & Cubs Fan - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 11:03 am:

    Rich, you deleted me twice in this thread, just for my own reference what did I do wrong?

  14. - Downstater - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 11:03 am:

    The sad fact is that Blago, Jones and their cronies could care less about what taxpayers think. They do not live in reality. Does anyone with an open mind really believe that these bozos deserve a raise? What have they done successfully over the last few years to deserve a raise? I sure cannot think of anything. If I was their employer I would fire them. Oops, I am along with the rest of the common people of this state. The great state of Illinois. Politics like no other.

  15. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 11:29 am:

    Dan S, language and the driveby nature of the comments. Explain a bit more. Thanks. :)

  16. - Dan S, a Voter & Cubs Fan - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 11:34 am:

    Very sorry, undersatand explaining a bit more didn’t think the language was out of line but it’s your blog

  17. - South of I-80 - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 11:51 am:

    One good thing about the pay raise, is that, once it takes effect, President Emil Jones will not have to borrow from he’s election campaign funds!:)

  18. - The Cowgirl - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 11:59 am:

    We saw a legislator’s vehicle in the parking lot last evening. It had the legislator plates. It was a fully loaded, new Yukon! From what that legislator could afford to drive, I don’t think his or her family is deprived. It would be nice to get a raise now and again. They get outstanding pay, a top-notch pension (not like that of regular state employees), and excellent fringe benefits. They don’t work 40 hours per week, 50 weeks per year, so they should not be paid a full-time salary.

  19. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 12:01 pm:

    ===They get outstanding pay===

    About what a junior public defender makes.

    ===They don’t work 40 hours per week, 50 weeks per year===

    Not all do, but many do.

    Still, as far as the political moment is concerned, it’s not a good idea.

  20. - Belle - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 12:07 pm:

    Legalized corruption isn’t it? Usually you get something of value for your money. In Illinois its like a subprime program for politicians.

  21. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 12:21 pm:

    It is brazen. But you can be brazen when you have no one to challenge you. Hendon is not only brazen, he is enjoying rubbing our noses in it.

    How low can Illinois government go?

    Those with challengers will need to create a plausible excuse for the salary increase this year.

    But there are no excuses for it, nor for Hendon.

    Go Con-Con 2008!

  22. - Sigh - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 12:32 pm:

    Thanks, Ricky. Another year of no raise for me from your buddy Blah - that makes it six years in a row - but you take care of yourself and don’t worry about anyone else. That’s what leadership is all about.

  23. - Douglas M. - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 1:07 pm:

    Disgusted, this link has names of the board members from 2002. That’s all I could find on them.

  24. - Gentlemen, behold! - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 1:29 pm:

    ===About what a junior public defender makes.===

    I’m not sure about that one. Plus, I don’t think that legislators are loaded down with loans from law school. I know legislators make and will make a lot more than assistant attorney generals, who haven’t gotten a raise for a couple years now.

  25. - A Citizen - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 1:46 pm:

    The Senate’s failure to vote on the pay raise results in the statutory process being blocked from completion. Seems the citizens have a legitimate legal right for the completion and thus a basis for a suit against Emil et al for denying due process. I say “sue the honorable peoples’ representatives” and demand the cost of the raises as the remedy sought.

  26. - Concerned Voter - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 3:13 pm:

    “Jaded - Friday, May 23, 08 @ 9:48 am: You know the Sen Repub and Garrett’s schtick is growing almost as old and the Hendon Jones Keystone Cop routine. If they don’t want the pay raise, have a press conference telling everyone they plan to donate the extra cash to the March of Dimes, and be done with it.”

    Jaded, the problem is, the state is in a fiscal crisis. At least that’s what they tell the different state agancies and employees. Agencies that right now have no money for different items until after June 30th. They shouldn’t have to give the money back, those pay raises shouldn’t be given to begin with.

    Many unions representing state employees are in negotiations right now for new contracts. It looks awfully bad for the muckity mucks to get nice raises and then turn around and cry poor mouth to the employees.

  27. - Mad Max - Saturday, May 24, 08 @ 7:15 am:

    Regarding Emil Jones and Ricky Hendon and pay raises for these poor hard-working politicians down in Springfield: Keep it up guys! Taxpayers are looking for one more reason to sweep out of office the Blagojevich Democrats down in Springfield. You are certainly giving them all of the reason that they need!

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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