Dear Editor:

Oops, they did it again! While everyone else in the state is facing cuts – from special education to senior citizens to those most in need – one group got an increase in the new state budget – our lawmakers. The state budget was touted as a "bare bones budget" where everyone has to sacrifice. But where is the sacrifice of the Pennsylvania legislature?

Like a thief in the night, our legislators once again voted themselves increased pay and benefits at midnight. As reported on July 7th, this year's state budget includes "a $1.7 million boost to cover [legislators] increased health care benefits and expected end-of-the-year raises" which ups the salary for a rank and file legislator to $82,026. Each legislator will receive approximately a $6,000 increase in pay and benefits.

I would like to commend Rep. Doyle Heffley (R-Carbon) as the only local Republican to vote against the budget. I am glad someone sees the unfairness of voting himself a raise and extra benefits when everyone else has to cut.

Pennsylvania will never be fiscally sound as long as our legislators care more about lining their own pockets then helping our bottom line.

Larry Padora

New Ringgold