Statement by Senator Borrello on Pay Raises for Legislators

ALBANY – Senator George Borrello issued the following statement on legislation proposing a $32,000 pay raise for members of the New York State Legislature that both houses considered today.

“As most New Yorkers are busy preparing to celebrate the holidays with family and friends, the Democratic majorities in the State Legislature cooked up a self-serving feast of their own in the form of a whopping $32,000 pay raise. This increase means that New York State legislators will be the highest paid in the country at $142,000. Coming just weeks after a 2022 election where Democratic legislative candidates made no mention that a 29 percent pay raise for themselves was in the works, this deceitful move only confirms New Yorkers’ worst perceptions of its political leaders.

“Their attempt to buy political cover by instituting a ban on outside income won’t make Albany better, it will make it worse. With this ban, we will be discouraging enterprising, accomplished individuals with real-world experience from entering public service and moving closer to eradicating the ‘citizen legislator’ – that individual who serves, not for a hefty salary, but because they want to contribute to their state. The end result will be more ‘professional politicians’ and more out-of-touch policies that hurt New Yorkers.  

“What state residents have said they wanted in poll after poll was for legislators to return to Albany to fix the dangerous mess they’ve made of our criminal justice system. The Democratic majorities flatly rejected those requests. Instead, they pursued their own selfish agenda by passing legislation that will put legislators’ pay at nearly double the median household income for New York families. New Yorkers deserve better…far better. That is why I vehemently opposed this proposal and voted ‘no.’