Innovation Ohio highlight Issue 2 Pay, Perks and Hypocrisy

Innovation today released documents showing the hypocrisy demonstrated by those supporting SB5.

  • Gov. Kasich, whose annual salary is $148,165 (over $10,000 more than his predecessor received), is exempt from the “performance pay” provisions of SB 5, and is still eligible to receive automatic annual 3% “step increases” that SB 5 would terminate for other public workers;
  • Gov. Kasich, while repeatedly calling for cuts in the pay and benefits of state and local government workers, pays his own senior staff an average salary of over $110,000. And he has repeatedly fudged the numbers on what he pays all workers in his office. In April, he told the General Assembly that the Governor’s Office payroll was just over $4.8 million. But as of May 7, the actual figure was just over $5.4 million —12% more than what the Governor claimed;
  • Gov. Kasich’s 27 Cabinet members earn an average base pay of more than $131, 000 and at least 22 of them each receive an additional $6,600 per year in “car allowances.” At least 7 Cabinet members are also ‘double dippers” who receive state pensions in addition to their government salaries;
  • All Members of the Ohio General Assembly earn a base salary of $60,584 for working a part-time job (the average annual salary for all Ohio workers is just over $40,000). But among the 70 Representatives and Senators who voted for SB 5, just 8 earn that “minimum.” The other 62 receive “leadership bonuses” ranging from nearly $34,000 per year to $5,000 annually, with the average bonus being over $8,600. Sen. Bill Seitz of Cincinnati —the only current member of the Senate who does not receive a bonus and was in the Senate when the SB 5 vote took place —had his bonus taken away when he refused to support the legislation;
  • Though fiercely critical of “double dipping” by other public workers, 12 House and Senate members who support SB 5 are themselves double-dippers (one is a triple-dipper), and collect legislative salaries in addition to state pensions. Perhaps the biggest single double-dipper in Ohio is House Speaker Bill Batchelder, who receives over $100,000 in a PERS pension, on top of his $94,500 annual legislative salary;
  • Unlike regular Ohioans, who are prohibited by law from claiming “mileage reimbursements” for car travel to and from their principal places of work, Ohio House and Senate members voting for SB 5 collect an average of $3,361 per year for driving to the State House to do their jobs;
  • Under SB 5, paid sick leave and vacation days would be reduced for average public workers. But General Assembly members enjoy unlimited paid leave for any reason whatsoever, subject only to the “approval” of the House and Senate leadership, whose approval is rarely, if ever, denied;
  • Other perks for legislators abound, including thousands of dollars worth of free tickets to athletic events like football, basketball and baseball games, free meals, and other gifts.

The full litanty of hypocrisy can be found over at IO, here.

Courtesy of Ohio Capital Blog, here's video fo the press conference