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Is this excessive pay to state legislators?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
I am taking this info from the April 1 edition of El Nuevo DÃ:censor:a newspaper. It deals with the pay of Puerto Rican state legislators. Personally I found these statistics ludicrous at how much these people get in pay. I had heard about this, but never seen this numbers. Do you think these numbers are excessive?

The brute salary of the average state legislator in Puerto Rico is of $60,000 anually. However, adding on benefits of pay to compensate for diet, mileage, hotel stays and all the other stuff, they get a total of money of around 117,000 dollars anually. Of course, we are not taking into account that they all have several private chofers (paid by the PR taxpayer) and brand new cars that are renewed every year, and free cell phones, police escorts that take them everywhere, among other things, which adds up to an estimate of an extra 118 grand per legislator. And every legislator has an average of 22 assistants (payed by the taxpayer) who have salaries of around 40-60 grand. This is in a country where Internal Revenue considers 50 grand as high class.

It was compared to state legislators across the US and it was the highest one of all. The second place was for Louisiana, where state legislators get a total monetary compensations of 50 grand. In a state where the per capita income is of 25 grand, while in PR it is 11 grand... the lowest in the US.

Of course, at the same time when talked about raising teacher's pay they say there's not enough money.

But what really gives you an idea of the scope of how excessive this is, is when you realize that we are talking of state legislators of an overseas territorry who have about as much authority as the state legislators in Alaska.
post #2 of 3
I am the type of person who believe that you get what you pay for. In other words I would prefer to increase payment to government officials if it would get me capable people. Sure every one talks about doing it for the country and I am sure there are a number of them. But personally I prefer a well paid official who is very capable rather than a not so well paid official who is not capable but really wants to do his part for the country. I prefer ability over patriotism. Or alternatively a person who is very capable may want to provide for his family and while they might wish to go into politics they may decide that in the interest of their family it is best not to.

As for the lack of money for the teachers, the question is what is the total wage packet for the both groups. If lets say there is a few hundred legislators and several thousand teachers, there may be many to increase payment for the few hundred and none for the teachers. Or rather if you increase the wage of the teachers the increase might be minimal. Anyway from what you have been saying, perhaps a way of expanding the pie and paying for both would be to fight corruption.
post #3 of 3
I guess you could look at it from a different veiw, but I have always thought the people with the most important jobs (teachers, police, firemen, paramedics, etc) get the least amount of pay and its not fair.

I think the legislators are being paid a bit much, but then again, those jobs arent handed out freely and it seems you have to be pretty well educated to be a part of them so if they worked for it, they deserve it.
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TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › IMO: In My Opinion › Is this excessive pay to state legislators?