Guest MINDSETTER ™ Rep. Gregg Amore: A 33 % Raise is Not a Good Idea
Sunday, August 02, 2015
"There were great candidates that we couldn't move forward ... just because the salary made it a non-starter…"
Both of these comments that appeared in the July 25 edition of The Providence Journal refer to Governor Raimondo’s proposal to increase the already six-figure salaries of several of her state department directors by 33 percent.
At a time when many Rhode Islanders are more focused on paying ever-rising bill costs with a stagnant salary that refuses to keep up with inflation, the governor is arguing that six employees who already make more than $100,000 a year are vastly underpaid.
One of the comments is from a concerned citizen. The other is from a member of the governor’s transition team.
Can you guess which comment above resonates with me the most?
My intent is not to diminish the work being done by these employees nor make light of the vital functions they serve to the residents of Rhode Island. But, in an age where every Rhode Islander has become a master of stretching their pennies, I find that taxpayer subsidized pay raises of 33 percent to those already making over $100,000 sends the wrong message to every Rhode Island resident struggling to simply make ends meet.
If our state’s best candidates for public service refuse the opportunity to serve because $100,000 is not a big enough salary, perhaps we are looking at the wrong type of candidate to lead our state agencies.
Maybe we need to look for prospective employees who wish to serve the public because they have pride in Rhode Island, they want to help their fellow residents and they wish to leave it in a better place for our future generations?
Times are still tight in Rhode Island and there are so many of our friends and neighbors who are in need of just the slightest bit of financial help to make it through their daily lives.
However, six high-level public employees who make over $100,000 a year are not a part of this group, nor should they be.
Rep. Gregg Amore is a Democrat who represents District 65 in East Providence.
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