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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Brian Johnson (R)

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Legislative Update

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

As you may have seen last week, Governor Dayton gave pay raises his political appointees, ignoring overwhelming opposition from Minnesota taxpayers who aren't seeing that kind of substantial income increase in their own family's budget.

In all, the governor raised the salaries of 31 agency heads, bumping up their mostly six-figure salaries by an average of 26 percent. The largest of those increases went to five PUC commissioners who will receive a $42,500 pay increase—what many people make in one year.

You may recall that this pay raise controversy began after the Democrat-controlled legislature gave the governor the power to unilaterally increase the salaries of his political appointees in 2013. After Governor Dayton announced commissioner pay increases earlier this year, House Republicans led the effort to return that authority to the legislature and in a bipartisan agreement, had that authority returned on July 2, 2015.

However, Governor Dayton chose to raise salaries on July 1, and while we hoped he would change his mind after listening to the people of Minnesota, taxpayers and legislators were unable to dissuade him from that decision.

At a time when take-home pay for many Minnesotans has remained flat, I am disappointed that taxpayers are footing the bill for hundreds-of-thousands of dollars in salary increases for political appointees.

I will continue to keep you updated on important issues happening in St. Paul. As always, if you have any questions or comments, or if I can assist you on a matter of state government, I welcome you to contact my office.

Have a wonderful week.