PA House Speaker Mum On Pay Raise Debate
Oct 12, 2005 8:02 pm US/Eastern
Beechview (KDKA) The uproar over big pay raises for state lawmakers can still be heard.
The man who spearheaded the pay raise was in Pittsburgh on Wednesday.
KD Investigator Paul Martino had a chance to ask him about rolling back that raise and the speaker of the Pennsylvania house, John Perzel, says he has no intention of rolling it back.
Perzel gave him self a 34 percent raise. His pay is increased from $110,000 a year to $145,000.
All it took was a legislative vote at 2 a.m. in the morning.
Despite continuing public outrage over the pay hike, Perzel remains defiant and doesn't appear to appreciate questions about his raise.
Perzel started his day reading stories to fourth graders at Beechwood Elementary School in Beechview.
When Perzel confronted reporters outside of the classroom, the mood became more serious.
(See the Video here http://kdka.com)
Reporters asked Perzel about the harsh reaction from the public and some lawmakers who want the pay raise rolled back.
The reaction is the reaction, Perzel said. But we passed the bill on July 7. It was passed by 119 members and that was the end of it as far as I know.
Perzel made it clear he wouldn't be rolling back the pay raise.
As speaker, Perzel has the power to prevent a pay raise debate from even coming to floor which may be why there was no debate when the pay raise passed initially.
Vice Chairman of Voter Education