McSweeney Bashes Legislative Pay Raise

A press release from State Rep. David McSweeney:

Rep. David McSweeney outraged lawmakers are given a pay raise while state still has no budget Lawmaker to give his pay raise to charity organizations

Springfield, IL – State Rep. David McSweeney (R-Barrington Hills) says lawmakers should not be receiving a pay raise when the State does not even have a balanced budget.

By law, he is not able to reject the pay raise and announced today he is donating the full amount of the yearly extra pay to charity.‎

Dave McSweeney

Dave McSweeney

“I think it is outrageous that we as legislators are getting a pay raise even though we are not down in Springfield every single day doing our job to get a budget passed,” said Rep. David McSweeney.

“We should be down there every day working to resolve the budget crisis. People are going to get hurt if we don’t do our job and pass a budget soon.”

McSweeney continued, “We should go into session immediately to pass legislation to eliminate the pay raise for members.”

Legislators are receiving a two percent automatic cost-of- living adjustment, which amounts to about an additional $1,563 annually. The pay increase is automatic and the Comptroller’s office has said that the law prohibits McSweeney from rejecting the pay increase outright.

McSweeney said today he is donating $781.50 to the McHenry County Pioneer Center, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping the economically disadvantaged and disabled achieve their full potential as individuals. He’s donating an additional $781.50 to the Night Ministry, a nonprofit group that helps homeless children and adults.

McSweeney has voluntarily cut his own pay and district office budget by 10%.

He’s also not going to accept his future paychecks until the state budget crisis is solved.

In addition, earlier this year, McSweeney introduced House Bill 1313 which eliminates COLA’s for legislators and forces them to take furlough days.


McSweeney Bashes Legislative Pay Raise — 4 Comments

  1. Thank you Dave. Giving to the level you can give. You can not out give God but always good to give with a thankful and happy heart when you are blessed with much. Is there anyone else stepping up to the plate in these part time positions?

  2. Dave’s gesture is all for show. The raises were automatic and there is no money to pay for them, but I agree all of our lawmakers are not worth what they are paid.

  3. Illinois’ Squishy Balanced Budget Requirement

    It would appear that Illinois’ budget is required to be balanced.

    The Illinois Constitution states that “Proposed expenditures shall not exceed funds estimated to be available for the fiscal year shown in the budget” (emphasis added). 33

    However, Illinois’ balanced budget requirement has some serious limitations.

    First, it refers to anticipated revenues, and there is no requirement that the state adjust its spending if the anticipated revenues are not realized.

    There is nothing to stop a governor or General Assembly from using an unrealistically high estimate when crafting the budget.

    This is well known and has been acknowledged by political leaders.34, 35

    In addition, Reports of the State Budget Crisis Task Force Illinois Report 18 “funds available” can include existing fund balances, even if these are intended to meet future obligations; and borrowing, even to pay operating expenses.

    Illinois’ balanced budget requirement is also a cash concept, referring only to the current fiscal year.

    This means that the balanced budget requirement does not refer to future pension liabilities or unpaid bills from the previous year.

    Each fiscal year from 2009 to 2012 ended with a larger stack of unpaid bills — $8 billion at the end of fiscal year 2012 — and each year these bills were ignored when projecting balance for the next year’s budget.

    Our state legislature should forth a bill to change the IL Const to read: “Proposed expenditures shall not exceed the previous year’s funds for the fiscal year shown in the present year’s budget”

    If Brucy, Jack, Dave, Pam or any other IL politician doesn’t work in that direction they are no better than the other political hacks that came before them.

    The Dem want a tax hike, fine we are so in the hole something additional needs to be done, but only if the agree to changing the states constitution before a vote on a tax increase.

    When the tax was higher, was it really that much harder to pay than what we have now?

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