Legislature rejects salary commission’s recommendation on legislators’ per diem and salary


On Day 10 of the 2022 legislative session, the Alaska House of Representatives voted unanimously to oppose a plan by the State Officers Compensation Commission, which would have restructured pay for legislators, commissioners and the governor and lieutenant governor. The Senate had already voted to reject the commission’s salary and per diem schedule.

The bill is expected to head to Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s desk late Thursday or Friday; he has 15 days — subtracting Sundays — to sign it, veto it, or allow it to go into law without his signature.

With an unanimous House and Senate, it’s unlikely Dunleavy will want to get into a veto fight so early in the session, when it’s clear the Legislature has the votes to override a veto.

The State Officers Compensation Commission earlier this month voted to cut the per-diem allowances for legislators from $307 a day to $100, and at the same time raise salaries from $50,400 to $64,000 a year.

The way the math would have worked is that for the legislators claiming the most per diem, the commission was giving them a haircut of about $11,000 per year.

The commission’s proposal would have gone into effect next January if the Legislature had not taken action.


  1. I do not suppose it any one gave any thought to getting the legislative session over and completed ahead of the 60 day limit or the 120 day deadline…Like Government as a whole we have far to much of it and it all needs to be cut back to a manageable level

    • I’m stunned that they wouldn’t vote to stop handing themselves wads of our tax dollars … no, not really

  2. This should be something legislation cannot do, its clearly a conflict of interest as they’ll never give themselves a paycut. I don’t know how it could work but I wonder if it could be a petition by the people

  3. Too much beer pong and leg wrestling – while being paid per diem… Greedy and entitled!!! Next, the thieves will vote themselves a hefty pay & per diem raise while eyeing $90/barrel oil – never once actually considering paying the full statutory PFD – and how about paying us what they’ve stolen these past few years? You know what to do Alaska.

  4. That was so fast for the legislators to band together and vote on this one issue. Of course, they voted to keep their pay and excessive perdiem the same. If only they could vote this fast on passing a sustainable operating budget, capital budget and a full statutory permanent fund dividend.

  5. We desperately need a constitutional convention.

    Item #1 – every 5 years the following two questions shall put put to a vote of the people in a statewide general election. “Shall the house be dismissed” and “Shall the Senate be dismissed.” Representatives or Senators dismissed shall be ineligible to serve in elected office for a minimum of 10 years.

  6. Compensation is usually earned, from the results of the last two years they don’t deserve any pay increases, if anything they deserve to loose half their pay and per diem.

  7. No surprises here. The Senate and House move PDQ when it concerns their pocket money. They also fight like hell to keep sequestered the other half of our PFDs the past six years is it now, refusing to allocate the full PFD funds that subsequent Governor Dunleavy had authorized. Trying to negotiate with terrorists, Dunleavy is now willing to beg for 50% of our future PFD earnings so long as it becomes law to prevent the legislature stealing it all. How are we going to get ourselves out of this mess we’ve let these ba$tards create? We must support many more brave men and women to run against these self-serving a$$holes and cut their money-sucking bollocks off.

  8. Dunleavy should veto the measure and up the ante by cutting his salary and those of his staff. Sure, it’s a token gesture but… it sets a tone.

  9. That is not a big haircut, $11,000. It’s less than the PFD haircut every Alaskan has received since the Walker vetoes that started this mess. Even though it will likely be overridden Dunleavy should veto this immediately. Send the message!

  10. When it comes down to it, turns out the legislature can act real fast. When it benefits them that is. They just love those special sessions and will not be denied their luxury per-diem.

  11. $293.00 per day to live in Juneau during the session is way too much. The legislators should get the same, reasonable per diem reimbursement “program” as all other state employees.

    • Genius, there isn’t a single commercial accommodation available in Juneau for less than $400/nt. Per diem assumes procuring commercial accommodations.

      We dealt with it in the executive branch by essentially doing away with per diem and going to actuals. We also made provisions for non-commercial accommodations such as long-term rentals and other non-commercial lodging. The problem could be solved by some people with some knowledge and analytical skills, but those are very scarce in Alaska these days.

  12. Everyone take note of this action, as it speaks volumes to every voter in Alaska.
    The Commission said they are overpaid.
    They voted unanimously that they don’t want to hear it.
    Every person who campaigned on smaller government just shot themselves in the foot.
    I believe our representation should not be paid for special sessions, especially if it is to finish work that should be done during the regular legislative session.

    We, the People, need to call for responsibility. They should be given the raise without the per diem.

  13. Fixable- let Alaskans decide what to pay “legislators”. Put it on the ballot and we’ll vote on what they get. Think of it as a “vote of confidence” (or no confidence). Legislators perform poorly don’t get pay raises. Stealing money out of our PFDs is considered poor performance.

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