Wednesday, March 18, 2009


With talk of a small temporary tax increase to raise state revenue, Senator Thayer Verschoor asked the Joint Legislative Budget Committee (JLBC) to calculate the savings associated with reducing state employee salaries to no more then that of the governor, $ 95,000. Verchoor said we should do that before raising taxes.

The JLBC reported back to Verchoor that based on information from the Department of Administration (ADOR) and the Board of Regents (ABOR), reducing state employee salaries to no more then the governor's salary would reduce General Fund expenses by approximately $ 76.2 million.

Under the ADOA system, 390 General Fund employees make over $ 95,000. Reducing their salaries to $95,000 would decrease General Fund expenses by $10.6 million, $ 8.9 million in salaries and $1.6 million in Employee Related Expenses (ERE), such as payroll taxes, agency pro rata charges and retirement contributions. Counting all funding sources, including Federal Funds, a total of 602 employees make over $95,000. Reducing all salaries would decrease total agency expenses by $ 15.4 million, $13.1 million for salaries and $ 2.4 million for ERE.


For the Universities, JLBC only had salary data recorded in $10,000 bands. As a result, that part of the JLBC analysis looked at salaries over $100,000 instead of $95,000. Counting all funding sources, including tuition, a total of 2,457 university employee make over $100, 000. Counting all salaries over $100,000 would decrease total university expenses by $166.7 million, $ 138.9 million in salaries and $ 27.8 million for ERE. The General fund share of those savings would be $ 65.6 million, $ 54.6 million in salaries and $ 10.9 million for ERE.

In addition to the 2,457 university employees making over $100,000, there are 747 university employees making between $90,000 and $100,000.

The American Conservative Republican believes that Sen. Verschoor may be on to something. $95,000 is a good salary, anyone making that much money is not going to starve or become homeless. Most people making that much are in responsible, leadership positions in the state government and as leaders, they should be willing to take a cut in pay to help the state provide essential government services for the people, such as courts and public safety.

Before putting the hand of the government in the pocket of people struggling to make ends meet, reduce the salary of those responsible for making the government's ends meet.

Bob Haran,

American Conservative Republican

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