By Juliet Williams
SACRAMENTO — California lawmakers and statewide elected officials will have a little extra cash in their pockets this holiday season, with their paychecks set to rise starting Sunday.
The annual increases of nearly $5,000 for rank-and-file members of the state Legislature and nearly $9,000 for Gov. Jerry Brown were approved by the California Citizens Compensation Commission in June, a decision that reversed some of the cuts made during the recession.
Brown’s salary will increase to $173,987, up from $165,288 but still below the high mark of $212,179 in 2008. Lawmakers’ base pay will rise to $95,291 a year from the current $90,526, although most lawmakers take home an additional $30,000 a year in per diem payments and some receive additional pay for leadership positions.
Even after the previous pay cuts, California lawmakers remained the highest paid in the nation. Unlike their peers in some other states, however, they do not receive pensions. Many other state legislatures also meet infrequently, or even every other year.
The California Legislature is in session, generally, from January to September.