Gov. Baker rejects bill that sought pay raises for top lawmakers

BOSTON (WHDH) - Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker vetoed a bill Friday that would have given nearly $18 million in annual pay raises to top legislators, statewide elected officials and judges.

“Given the current fiscal outlook for the state, now is not the time to expend additional funds on elected officials’ salaries,” Baker said. “We thought it was important to veto this fiscally irresponsible legislation.”

The Senate and House approved the bill by veto-proof margins. The Senate voted 31-9 in favor of the legislation earlier Thursday, a day after the House approved the measure by a 115-44 vote.

The annual salary for House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Stan Rosenberg, both Democrats, would have climbed to about $45,000 to more than $142,000 a year, while the heads of the House and Senate Ways and Means Committees would have received a $35,000 raise.

The bill also would have boosted Baker’s annual salary from $151,800 to $185,000, and for the first time provide the governor a $65,000 housing allowance.

Other constitutional officers, including the attorney general and state treasurer, would also have gotten substantial raises, and annual salaries for judges would have increased by $25,000.

The Senate and House can vote to bring the issue back to the table.

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