LFC Comments: We will be doing a series of articles on Ohio Senators and Representatives. We are curious why an individual would want to become a State legislator. Is it the money, power, prestige, or do they really want to be public servants and help their fellow man?
In this article, we will look at their annual compensation. Future articles will deal with the individuals running for the legislative positions representing Northeast Ohio in the November 2020 general election. We will look at their campaign finance reports as filed with the Secretary of State. Those reports provide a list of contributors and where their campaign money has been spent. In addition, we will be looking at their websites and other social media accounts to see where they fall in the political spectrum on economic and social issues.
The Ohio Revised Code section 101.27 deals with “Compensation of Members”. Here is a link to that section: http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/101.27
The code is written in “legalese”, and not in a straight forward writing style:
“Every member of the senate, except the members elected president, president pro tempore, assistant president pro tempore, majority whip, minority leader, assistant minority leader, minority whip, and assistant minority whip, shall receive as compensation a salary of sixty-three thousand seven dollars a year during the senator’s term of office. Every member of the house of representatives, except the members elected speaker, speaker pro tempore, majority floor leader, assistant majority floor leader, majority whip, assistant majority whip, minority leader, assistant minority leader, minority whip, and assistant minority whip, shall receive as compensation a salary of sixty-three thousand seven dollars a year during the representative’s term of office. Such salaries shall be paid in equal monthly installments during such term.”
Those members that are in leadership positions or on committees earn additional compensation. Here is a more understandable list we found at this website: Legislative Benefits, Privileges, and Restrictions of Office Chapter 3 2019
Based on these figures, LFC does not believe that base annual salary is enough of a motivator for an individual to want to become a State legislator. We will continue to analyze the other factors to try to determine the allure of being a State legislator, and how money and party determines who gets a “shot at the brass ring”.