Ill. representative wants to cut lawmakers' pay until state's debts are paid


by Staff

Posted on January 30, 2013 at 9:38 PM

Updated Thursday, Jan 31 at 10:19 AM

SPRINGFIELD, Il ( -- A freshman politician wants to hit lawmakers right in the paycheck until Illinois crawls out of debt.

Representative Charlie Meier only took his seat in the Illinois assembly this January and he has turned a few heads with his plan.

"I'm nothing shiny or fancy,” said Meier, “but I'm an honest hard-working person with a lot of common sense."

Meier is a farmer from Okawville. He said he knows what it's like to live within his means. This is why the big budget problem in Springfield makes him so angry.

The state is sinking in massive debt and plagued with a damaged credit rating with no sign of a solution.

Lawmakers in Illinois currently make a comfortable $67,000 a year.

Meier thinks things might get done quicker, if every elected official had to wait in line for their money just like everyone else.

"Right now we have nursing homes that are 385 days behind on their payments,” said Meier.

Meier said hospitals, doctors and school districts and numerous other departments are way behind while legislators continue to receiving their paychecks.

Meier's bill would hold off on paying lawmakers until all the state's debts are paid in full.

Lawmakers have killed pay raises for themselves, but this bill already died a quick death in the assembly's rules committee.

But Meier said the result doesn’t deter him. He said he is out to prove a point and just might introduce the bill again.