Starting in December, Governor Jerry Brown and state lawmakers will receive a three percent pay raise. The raise was approved this week by the California Citizens Compensation Commission, and this raise will come on top of the four percent raise that kicked in late last year. Governor Brown’s pay will increase from $190,102 to $195,805, and the pay for rank-and-file lawmakers will go from $104,117 to $107,240. This comes after the appointed commission had reduced lawmaker’s pay almost 20 percent since 2009. Tom Dalzell, Chairman of the California Citizens Compensation Commission, stated:
We’re still a little bit short.
Proposition 1F banned raises during years of state budget deficits and the pay for lawmakers has been slowly increasing since 2009. In 2013, the pay for lawmakers increased five percent, then it went up another two percent in 2014, then it increased another three percent in 2015. According to studies produced by the commission, the governor and attorney general positions pay significantly less than what many local government officials earn. However, in addition to the salaries, California lawmakers also receive tax-free per diem payments for every day the Legislature is in session. During the 2015 legislative year, the averaged tax-free per diem was about $34,000 per legislator, which was not accepted by lawmakers who live within a short commute of the state Capitol.