Pay Raises Given During State Budget Cuts

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State records show staffers for both Republicans and Democrats in the Ohio Senate got pay raises this summer in the aftermath of state budget cuts and the passage of a
law limiting public employee unions.

Payroll data reviewed by The Associated Press show 19 Senate caucus employees got pay hikes since July. The raises were first reported Tuesday on the liberal political blog Plunderbund.

Republican Senate President Tom Niehaus says he ordered a pay review in December after experienced staff members began leaving during the transition of administrations. He says he was looking to see if he could make pay for experienced employees more competitive so the Senate could retain their expertise.

Niehaus says raises didn't require a budget increase in the Senate.