Oregon officials give themselves a raise

NW Watchdog logo_thbby Shelby Sebens, Northwest Watchdog

The Oregon Legislature might not have accomplished all it’s goals in the 2013 session (substantial pension reform still pending) but lawmakers made sure to give Gov. John Kitzhaber and other statewide officials a raise.

Kitzhaber’s salary is jumping up $5,000 from $93,600 a year to $98,600. His salary will still be below the average for governors across the country but he’s not the lowest — Colorado’s governor makes $90,000; Arizona: $95,000; Arkansas: $86,890 and Maine: $70,000.

Gov. John Kitzhaber gets a raise

Governors in Florida, Alabama and Tennessee chose not to take the taxpayer-funded salaries, according to figures released by the Council of State Governments posted on a nifty graphic by Stateline.org, the news site for Pew Charitable Trusts.

Kitzhaber also earned a nice pension in downtime between terms as the state’s chief in command. He earned about $40,000 a year from 2006 until the time he became governor again in 2011.

Oregon Secretary of State Kate BrownTreasurer Ted Wheeler and Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian will also see their salaries bump up from $72,000 to $77,000 and Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum’s salary will go from $77,200 to $82,200.

The raises go into effect in January.

Meanwhile, state employees in Oregon are about even with the private sector when it comes to average salaries.

According to another study compiled by Stateline.org, Oregon’s average state employee makes $43,810 while the average private sector employee makes $43,693.

Northwest Watchdog is a project of the Franklin Center for Government & Public Integrity

Related: State workers may see double-digit pay raises (Statesman-Journal)