South Dakota lawmakers to debate legislative pay panel

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) South Dakota lawmakers may establish a commission to give salary recommendations for the state's 105 legislators.

The 10-member Legislative Compensation Commission would consider salaries of other similar state legislators in developing recommendations.

The citizen panel would look to maintain a citizen Legislature while compensating members such that all people would have an opportunity to serve.

State lawmakers set their own salaries, which have been a subject of debate during the 2018 session.

The state House has approved a measure that would ask voters to set legislators' salaries at one-fifth of the South Dakota median household income.

U.S. Census numbers for 2015 show that would mean a raise of 70 percent for state lawmakers to nearly $10,200. The proposed constitutional amendment is pending in the Senate and would require voter approval.

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