State worker pay raise bill advances

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia teachers, state employees and judges would get raises under legislation advanced Friday by the state Senate.Earlier this week, the House of Delegates passed a pay-raise package (HB2879). Senators replaced that with their own version of the legislation.Senate Finance Chairman Roman Prezioso, D-Marion, called the Senate's version more fiscally responsible than the House's version.The House legislation was estimated to cost $83 million. With the Senate amendments, it would cost $70 million.The Senate on Friday added large raises for judges, though, which weren't included in the House bill. These raises range from $7,500 for magistrates to $15,000 for Supreme Court justices.Senators also added a $32,500 raise for the state's adjutant general.
Teachers would receive $1,488 raises under the Senate-amended bill, rather than the $1,800 approved by the House.School service personnel would receive $500 raises, rather than the $1,000 the House wants.Higher education employees, State Police troopers, Division of Natural Resources officers, and all other state workers would get 2 percent raises under the amended bill.The House gave state troopers $970 and DNR officers $835, while other employees would get 2 percent raises.The bill is scheduled for a vote Monday in the Senate.Reach Alison Knezevich at or 304-348-1240.
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