Salary boost for local DAs ordered by state should be paid by state, Sen. Ritchie says
A state senator who represents part of the North Country says she wants the state to pick up the cost of higher district attorney salaries that the state has mandated.
Sen. Patty Ritchie, R-Heuvelton, has announced she is cosponsoring legislation that would stop Albany from passing the buck to counties by making the state cover the full cost of those mandated salary raises.“Requiring counties to cover the cost of state-mandated raises for DAs is just another example of Albany forcing our counties—and local taxpayers—to foot the bill for unfunded mandates imposed by the state,” said Ritchie.
“Through this measure, we can help provide relief to counties, many of which are already struggling to balance budgets. I am pleased to cosponsor this measure, and am hopeful it will soon also be introduced in the Assembly.”
The New York State Commission of Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation has ordered increased judicial pay. While the state has funded prior salary increases via the state budget, the governor’s budget proposal and the final state budget did not include funds to help cover the raises, Ritchie said.
As a result, counties are now required to cover this additional cost, which totals roughly $30,000 per county.
Ritchie is also co-sponsor of a measure (S.6341) that would require the state to cover the full cost of indigent defense, a change that would save the three counties she represents $5.6 million a year.
She represents the western half of St. Lawrence County including Ogdensburg, Canton and Gouverneur.
In addition, she sponsors a measure (S.4964-B) that would provide mandate relief to counties by allowing them to retain more money collected at local DMV offices for work done on behalf of the state.