The Legislature isn’t willing to provide funds needed to sustain education, health care, public health, or affordable housing. But they did pass a bill to give Finneran loyalists in the House of Representatives new stipends of between $7,500 and $15,000 beyond their base pay of $53,000.
Fortunately, Governor Romney vetoed the bill (H. 3743) Now we need to help reformers in the House SUSTAIN the Governor’s veto. The bill would change leadership pay from something that requires legislation, and hence the Senate’s and Governor’s approval, to an internal rule controlled entirely by the House. Since more than 50 out of 160 members currently receive stipends, we could very soon see at least 1/3 of the House (enough to control further overrides of gubernatorial vetoes) with stipends controlled by Finneran. Finneran has already talked about adding stipends for several new committees, for vice-chairmen of committees, and for ranking Republicans in each committee.
Common Cause director Pam Wilmot, writes that “Overriding this veto is Speaker Finneran’s number one priority this summer. But if rank and file members can sustain the veto this will be the most significant defeat for Finneran–EVER.”
Voters are urged to contact their state representative today and urge them to SUSTAIN Governor Romney’s veto of H. 3743, the unseemly bill that allows Speaker Finneran to raise the pay of an unlimited number of lieutenants without the approval of the Senate or Governor.