Rep. Wallan: politicians don’t need a raise

MEDFORD, Ore. — A local state representative called on fellow legislators to reject a proposed bill that would increase their salaries.

The proposed bill, Senate Bill 959 would increase legislators pay by nearly 63 percent.

Oregon is governed by a citizen legislature, meaning elected officials are not full time politicians.

The current salaries were designed to compensate them for their time spent away from their jobs and businesses while serving in the capitol.

Medford Representative Kim Wallan asked those in office to reject the proposal Wednesday, saying their positions aren’t supposed to become their careers.

“I just think that the tradition in Oregon, and actually the Oregon constitution, says that our legislature is to be a citizen legislature and that means that you’re a citizen in your community,” said Rep. Wallan. “It’s supposed to be less lawmaking not more.”

The bill was brought forward by three Democrats and a Republican.

It’s currently being reviewed by the Oregon Senate.

Backers said the pay increase will encourage more young, diverse people to run for office.

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