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Pelosi Announces Major Pay Increase: ‘Dear Colleague’

House staffers can expect a hefty pay increase in 2023 — courtesy of outgoing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Pelosi announced that the House of Representatives would raise its maximum annual salary for staffers to $212,000 in a Friday “Dear Colleague” letter to fellow lawmakers. Pelosi previously established a new minimum annual salary of $45,000 for congressional staffers, a policy she touted in the letter announcing the maximum salary increase. The outgoing speaker pointed to the House’s need to “retain and recruit the best talent in our nation.” The maximum pay is considerably more than the salary of most elected House members and senators, which is set at $174,000 a year. In March, Bloomberg reported that staff turnover rates had spurred fears of a “brain drain” in Congress, with experienced staffers departing for private sector employment. The congressional staffer pay raise is coming at the same time as an increase in pay for federal employees and members of the military. The former are slated for 4.6 percent increases combined between locality pay increases and annual salary increases, according to the Federal Times. Military pay was also raised by 4.6 percent. Congressional staffers and some members of Congress have claimed that they’re underpaid for years. Many congressional employees have departed government employment to become lobbyists, a development spurring the salary increase. The pay increase is the second in as many years, with Pelosi buffing the maximum staffer salary to $199,300 last year. That increase was the first in more than a decade after Congress voted to freeze standardized pay increases for House members and senators in 2009, according to The Hill. Members of Congress have griped about their personal salaries before. As the Washington Examiner has reported, socialist Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has argued that the annual $174,000 salary for House representatives and senators is insufficient for the cost of living in both Washington and her New York City congressional district. The second pay increase follows a move to unionize on the part of some House staffers earlier this year; a development supported by Pelosi, according to The New York Times. Pelosi is slated to vacate the speaker’s office when the new Republican majority takes over as the 118th United States Congress opens on Tuesday. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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