By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf
The Senate voted Tuesday to provide a 20% salary increase over the next four years to the attorney general, comptroller, state treasurer and secretary of state.
The attorney general, comptroller and treasurer each earn $125,000 annually. The secretary of state makes $87,500 annually.
Under the bill, which Senate members approved 36-10, the attorney general, comptroller and treasurer would earn $149,500 in 2018, and the secretary of state would earn $109,500.
In years past, the General Assembly has rejected salary bumps for the state officers, despite consistent recommendations from the Governor’s Salary Commission.
Based on the resolution of the commission, lawmakers have already allowed the next governor to get a 20% raise to $180,000 by doing nothing to stop it in the first 45 days of the current session.
Senate Minority Leader David Brinkley, R-Frederick, voted in favor of the measure, though he said he would have preferred to also vote on the salary hike the legislature is due to receive.
“We were hoping to put some amendment on this to address legislative salaries … We’re still exploring some other options,” Brinkley said prior to the vote. “I want to go ahead and encourage the passage of this bill, but we still think there ought to be a vote on the Senate floor for any type of salary increase.”
The House of Delegates must still act on the measure.