“These are not ordinary times, and we need extraordinary solutions,” said Rep. Rowe. “I am disappointed that the Legislature has again failed to act responsibly and pass meaningful cuts.”
“Our constituents are really feeling the impact of the economy, which is also affecting state finances,” said Rep. Hwang. “I’m willing join my colleagues in leading by example and take a pay cut before asking any department to reduce their budgets.”
During the day’s legislative session, lawmakers approved measures to temporarily comply with state laws to balance the budget but warned that the deficit could spike again as early as this week because of falling revenues. Proposals Reps. Rowe and Hwang joined with fellow Republicans legislators in supporting include:
- Cutting their own pay by 5 percent;
- Delaying an $87 million salary increase package for corrections officers until a budget is in place;
- Restoring $54 million in cuts Democrats eliminated from Gov. Rell’s deficit reduction proposal
- Delaying or eliminate local mandates such as costly in-school suspension and treating juvenile offenders as adults, which police departments support.
“Our failure to take this budget crisis seriously only makes things worse, and makes it increasingly hard to get control over the deficit,” added Rep. Rowe.