Ala. lawmakers to receive cost of living raise - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Ala. lawmakers to receive cost of living raise

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Birmingham Rep. John Rogers says he will accept the raise. Birmingham Rep. John Rogers says he will accept the raise.
Homewood Representative Paul DeMarco refused the 62 percent pay increase in 2007. Homewood Representative Paul DeMarco refused the 62 percent pay increase in 2007.
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

This April some Alabama lawmakers will have more cash to pay their taxes. The legislators are set to get a $1,600 cost of living raise which stems from the 2007 62 percent raise. The increase will push some lawmakers salary to around $55,000.

"Yes, I will take it cause it's a cost of living raise," Birmingham Rep. John Rogers says.

Rogers' salary will be one of those averaging at more than $55,000.

"I don't think you will see a repeal of it because these guys are going to have to live. They have to pay gasoline. They got to pay hotel expenses. It's not fair to ask them to pay out of their noses," Rogers said.

At the Jefferson County Courthouse, taxpayers forced to wait for hours in line to do business with county are not supportive of the pay hike.

"Everything goes up. Everything else is getting cut. They don't need a pay raise." Ashton Dorough said.

"No, not really because we can't afford it and everything is a little bit more higher and everything," Joseph Causey said.

"They can take whatever they want as long as they provide for us the people. The people who pay taxes to get what they need," Mary Brown said.

Homewood Representative Paul DeMarco refused to take the 62 percent pay increase in 2007 and DeMarco has refused more than $100,000 in pay raises since then.

"I think it hurts the credibility of the legislature. We need to show we are public servants. I think it was very self serving to do a 62 percent pay raise," DeMarco said.

The Homewood representative expects the legislature will continue to work on ways to deal with the pay raise issue. So far efforts to repeal the pay raise have failed.

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