Lawmakers react to resolution calling for 10% pay cut

Recently Governor Beshear said he and others in the Executive Branch were cutting their pay by 10%. So Senator Kathy Stein, D-Lexington is suggesting…the legislative and judicial branches do the same.

“In my case..I wouldn’t mind if we did that,” said Senator Brandon Smith.

But Sen. Smith, R-Hazard, said not all lawmakers have other income to back up their legislative pay.

“To be fair…there’s a lot of members here who have to subsidize their living because they’re not getting paid while they are down here, or while they are serving here in Frankfort,” said Smith.

Lawmakers earn about $190 a day,and a 10% pay cut would translate to about $19 a day less. Ky. legislators are paid when in session, or when they are working on state business.

“Legislators, I would say, do not make very much, people think they make a fortune, but legislators really do not,” said Rep. Jesse Crenshaw, D-Lexington.

Stein’s resolution calls for justices and judges’ pay to be cut. But there’s a legal question as to if lawmakers can legally do that.

“The constitution, section 120, has a specific prohibition against reducing the pay of any sitting judge or justice during his or her term in office,” said Hon. John D. Minton, Kentucky’s Chief Justice.

With that being said..there is discussion of public officials willing to make lessen the state’s financial blow.

“I know I get calls from judges who are sincerely interested in finding ways to economize in their individual offices,” said Justice Minton.

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