Unconstitutional Pa Legislator Pay Raise

Discussion in 'Politics' started by iq4truth, Jul 26, 2005.

  1. iq4truth

    iq4truth
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    Pennsylvania State Senator Joe Conti and other lawmakers, identified here ( Click Here ), voted themselves over a $10,000 raise, intentionally violating the clearly-written intent of Article 3, Section 27 of our Pennsylvania Constitution that states, "No law shall extend the term of any public officer, or increase or diminish his salary or emoluments, after his election or appointment."

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  2. Daisy

    Daisy
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    Was the point to intentionally violate the law for some political reason or just to get himself more money?
     
  3. Johnv

    Johnv
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    The problem with the Constitution is that it allows for additionaly salaries to be paid a sitting elected official when that salary is an unvouchered expense, such as an increase in the cost of living. The aforementioned pay raise, being a cost of living adjustment (something not done for 10 years in PA) fell into that category. Yes, I know, it stinks, but it falls withinin the bounds of the PA Constitution.

    Their new pay is the same as it was in 1995 when the COLA is applied (there has been no pay raise in 10 years). Perhaps it would be prudent to replace that loophole with a separate cost of living mechanism that kicks in on a regular basis, thus removing it from the unvouchered expense category.
     
  4. Debby in Philly

    Debby in Philly
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    What else are they going to do with all our tax money?

    Help SEPTA get out of its mess?
    Finish all the road projects?
    Fund abstinance programs?
    Shut down the abortionists?

    Can't imagine them doing those things!
     
  5. hillclimber

    hillclimber
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    This is perfectly predictable and understandable in a democracy. Is not the little bit of flack he's going to endure worth $800 a month?
     
  6. iq4truth

    iq4truth
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    JohnV,

    Please cite the Article and Section of the Pennsylvania Constitution that "allows for additionaly salaries to be paid a sitting elected official when that salary is an unvouchered expense."

    Here's a snip from this article (Click Here):
    I believe that the clear intent of Article 3 Section 27 is that elected officials are not to vote themselves a raise.
    Benjamin Franklin once warned, "When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic." Same goes for elected officials.
     
  7. Johnv

    Johnv
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    It doesn't cover unvouchered expenses at all. Cost of living adjustments (aka, COLA) have been accepted in the business world for quite a while. In businesses that impliment them, they are not considered pay increases. They are, quite literally, an adjustment in accordance with the rate of inflation. The COLA issue has been brought before the Supreme Court several times, and in all cases, they agreed with the arguement that a COLA is not a salary increase.

    The PA expressly prohibits salary increases, but does not address COLA adjustments. I know it stinks, but it's perfectly legal and above board, and in the private business sector, it's a common accepted business practice.
     
  8. iq4truth

    iq4truth
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    JohnV, you nailed it here, "It [the Constitution of Pennsylvania] doesn't cover unvouchered expenses at all."

    The self-elected pay raise is clearly unconstitutional. The Pennsylvania Constitution is clear in its intent, that pay raises are to be made through law, not through any other means, in Article 3, Section 27 of our Pennsylvania Constitution that states, "No law shall extend the term of any public officer, or increase or diminish his salary or emoluments, after his election or appointment."

    My eight-year-old can understand the meaning and intent of Article 3, Section 27; that our elected officials are only to get pay raises through law, and that they are not to give themselves a raise.

    When people can give themselves a raise, due to our sinful inherent nature, of course people would do so, which will bankrupt any organization.

    Judges who make exceptions to the clear intent of our Constitution must be replaced or impeached if we are to maintain justice and order. The same goes for lawmakers.
     

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