Monday, February 26, 2007

SC Times op-ed on Per Diem

Randy Krebs is dead on with this editorial.
That means during this 140-day session they now can collect up to $13,440 for
daily expenses. And they aren't even required to provide receipts!

It's stuff like this that people were tired of the status quo. They voted for change this past November (in most cases). Actions like this fly in the face of the electoral storm that consumed the 2006 elections. Backdoor pay raises will haunt many in swing districts. I see this coming back to bite a lot of people in the ass.

Taxes are a big issue out here. Locally elected officials, County Commissioners, mayors, and city council members I spoke with discussed the anxiety behind truth in taxation hearings. All are more than willing to "open up the books" and ensure that the public knows what their money is being spent on.

It's all about accountability.

Last weeks vote in the Senate flew in the face of accountability. A $30 per diem increase in which no one has to submit expenses?

In the non-profit world, I got less than what the market dictated for mileage. Believe me, driving across the state countless times adds up too. Meals would only be reimbursed with a receipt.

It's the real world people, a world where accountability is not a ten point Scrabble word.

BTW, I would have voted against this bill. Senator Dille was absent.

1 comment:

Chris Truscott said...

Terrible move by the DFL -- and most Republicans, who also supported it.

But eventually we need to have a serious debate on legislative pay. It's low to the point of possibly excluding some of those who aren't stay-at-home spouses, wealthy or retired.

I'm generally against passing tough choices off to the voters (I.E., last year's transportation amendment), but this should be their choice.