25 Oct 2017
- By Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa – [email protected] – Variety News Staff
THE House Committee on Judiciary and Governmental Operations chaired by Rep. Ivan Blanco has approved a measure to raise the salaries of appointed officials— a proposal that would cost half a million dollars, for which a funding source has yet to be identified.
House Bill 20-35 was introduced by Rep. John Paul Sablan.
Under the bill, the secretary of Finance, whose current annual pay is $70,000 a year, will get $84,000.
The bill also proposes to increase the public auditor’s annual pay to $100,000 from $54,000.
The other proposed pay hikes:
Secretary of Community and Cultural Affairs — $70,000 from $54,000;
Secretary of Commerce — $70,000 from $54,000;
Commissioners of Public Safety, Corrections and fire — $75,000 from $54,000
Secretary of Public Works — $70,000 from $54,000
Secretary of Labor — $70,000 from $54,000
Secretary of Lands and Natural Resources — $70,000 from $48,000
Secretary of Public Lands — $70,000 from $54,000
Public Defender — $84,000 from $56,000
The current annual compensation for department deputy directors is capped at $42,000; the resident department heads, $36,000; unclassified division chiefs and special assistants of the principal executive department, $40,800 except that the director for the Division of Tax and Revenue, $50,000; and the annual compensation for private secretaries to the governor and lt. governor shall be not more than $30,000.
The bill would raise the salary ceilings. The annual compensation for department deputy secretaries shall not be more than $60,000; the annual compensation for resident department heads shall not be more than $54,000; the annual compensation for unclassified division directors and special assistants of the principal executive departments shall not be more than $50,000 except that the director for the Division of Tax and Revenue shall not be more than $70,000; and the annual compensation for private secretaries to the governor and lt. governor shall not be more than $50,000.
Also getting a raise under the bill are the governor’s special assistant for programs and legislative review, $54,000 from $45,000; special assistant for communication and protocol/press secretary, $60,000 from $43,000; special assistant for management and budget, $84,000 from $60,000; special assistant for administration, $70,000 from $54,000; special assistant for personnel matters, $60,000 from $50,000; special assistant for special projects, $54,000 from $45,000; special assistant for homeland security and emergency management, $70,000 from $60,000; special assistant for transit authority, $60,000 from $54,000; special assistant for substance abuse, $60,000 from $54,000; special assistant for youth affairs, $57,000 from $40,000; governor’s/lt. governor’s legal counsel, $84,000 from $70,000; governor’s/lt. governor’s chief of staff, $60,000 from $54,000; governor’s special policy advisor, $60,000 from $54,000.
In an interview, Rep. John Paul Sablan said an earlier version of the bill was first introduced in the 19th Legislature by then-Rep. Antonio Sablan.
He said he re-introduced the bill so that all appointed officials will also receive a pay hike just like government employees.
“Appointed officials deserve salary increases, too,” he added.
He said the total cost of the pay increases for all appointed officials is roughly half a million dollars a year.
“There is no funding source yet. We just want to create a salary schedule for appointed officials, but this bill, if passed by both houses and enacted into law, will not take effect until the next fiscal year…. We still have to identify some funding but we just want to create a salary schedule for the appointed officials so in the event there is funding, we can implement the increase.”
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/99560-house-panel-oks-pay-hikes-for-appointed-officials