Thursday, December 6, 2012

In the News: Compensation of Wisconsin Legislators

Source:  Retiring Guy's postcard collection

Compensation of Wisconsin Legislators.  ("Wisconsin Brief" from the Legislative Reference Bureau, February 2009.)

Contents of report
  • Current procedure for setting salaries
    • Established with passage of 1983 Wisconsin Act 27
    • Removed requirement that proposal be presented to legislature in the form of a bill
    • Dropped statutory connection between legislative salaries and executive salary group system.
  • Speaker's stipend
    • Established in 1853
    • Currently $25 per day
  • Travel allowance
    • For one round trip to and from the state capitol each week during legislative sessions
    • Rate is determined by Joint Committee on Employment Relations
    • Current rate:  48.5 cents per mile.
    • Reimbursement provision for actual and necessary expenses incurred while traveling on official business outside Madison.
  • Per diem allowance
  • Office allotments (2009-2010 legislative session)
    • Senators:  $55,955
    • Senate majority and minority leaders:  $12,000 each "leadership account"
    • Assembly representatives:  $12,000
    • Allowable expenses
      • Printing
      • Postage 
      • Photocopying
      • "Some" telephone services
      • Newspapers and books
      • "Miscellaneous" office expenses. 
    • Not included:  Staff salaries, which, along with staffing levels, are set by respective houses.
  •  In-district travel allowances,
    • In addition to travel allowance
    • Part of office allotment for Senators
    • Separate allowance for Assembly representatives (in 2009, ranged from $3,000 to $10,000, depending upon size of district)
  • Interim expense allowance
    • Authorized by 1995 Wisconsin Act 27
    • Intended to pay for postage and clerical assistance expenses
    • $75 for senators, $25 for representatives
    • Must be approved by Senator Majority Leader of Assembly Speaker 
    • As of 2009, this stipend has never been paid since passage of Act 27, according to LRB brief.
  • Retirement 
    • Participation made voluntary in 1957, compulsory in 1973.
    • May received full benefits at age 62, actuarially reduced benefits at 55.
    • Cannot hold any elective or appointed position covered by Wisconsin Retirement System
  • Other benefits
    • Same as those available to other state employees
      • Health insurance
      • Sick leave
    • Also available
      • Life insurance
      • Income continuation
In the news:
Assembly GOP considers increased expense funding.  (Badger Herald, 12/6/2012)
Do Wisconsin legislators need to be paid more?  (Capital Times, 12/6/2012)
GOP lawmakers consider raising rates paid for expenses.  (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12/5/2012)

1 comment:

Graham said...

This legislation seems to dated to me, think it needs re-addressing personally. Time has moved on rapidly since this was last updated.