Yesterday, legislation Chief Co-Sponsored by State Rep. David McSweeney (R-Barrington Hills) to eliminate Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA) for members of the General Assembly and constitutional officers passed the Illinois House of Representatives. In addition, House Bill 5760 freezes per diem and travel reimbursements for Fiscal Year 2019.
A law passed during the 86th General Assembly mandated yearly COLAs as part of the compensation for lawmakers, judges, and constitutional officers. The COLA takes effect automatically unless legislation, such as HB 5760, is passed. Similar legislation was passed in previous years to eliminate the automatic COLA and reduce per diem and travel reimbursements. Last year, Rep. McSweeney was a Chief Co-Sponsor of a similar COLA ban, House Bill 643, which is now in effect for the current fiscal year ending on June 30, 2018.
In addition to freezing legislators pay, Rep. McSweeney has filed a bill this session, House Bill 339, to reduce legislators’ salaries by 10%.
"The House acted wisely to eliminate the automatic COLA- legislators do not need a pay increase and certainly haven’t earned one," Rep. McSweeney said. "Illinois is woefully behind in paying its bills; legislators should be focused on reducing spending and lowering taxes.”
HB 5760 passed the House on a 108-2 vote.