TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Rensselaer County Democratic legislators had recently proposed a resolution to establish a bi-partisan committee to explore protection options that would prevent salary increases without proper public notification and review. However, these legislators said the Republican county legislators decided to not pursue the resolution further and “killed” it in committee.
The resolution was introduced after the Republican Majority gave pay raises to select individuals on December 21, 2021, after the 2022 County Budget was adopted. County Executive Steve McLaughlin was given a $20,700 raise.
McLaughlin was recently indicted on criminal charges by New York’s Attorney General stemming from alleged campaign finance violations. The Justice Center of Rensselaer County and Rensselaer County Women for Change protested the Legislature’s approval of his $20,000 raise, saying the Legislature failed to represent the interests of the people.
“These pay raises should have been presented during the regular budget process whereby the public is properly notified and public hearings are held to appropriately discuss and debate the merits of all budgetary actions. Instead, the Republican Majority, out of public view, uses the county savings to dole out pay raises, with no regard for the financial impact these legacy costs will have on the taxpayer,” said Deputy Minority Leader Cindy Doran.
You can read the resolution below:
“We have a responsibility as elected officials to always inform and protect the taxpayer,” said Legislator Ken Zalewski.
NEWS10 reached out to Rensselaer County Republican legislators for comment but has not heard back yet.