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updated: 7/15/2010 3:06 PM

Republicans blast Quinn pay increases

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Two Republican state representatives and two representative candidates held a news conference Thursday in Palatine to denounce Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn's pay raises for top staff people at a time when the state budget is billions in the red.

State Representatives Ed Sullivan of Mundelein and Suzie Bassi of Palatine, along with Republican candidates for representative Ruth Munson of Elgin and Ryan Higgins of Schaumburg are backing legislation that would limit future salary increases for political appointees of the governor to the lesser of 3 percent or one-half of the Employment Cost Index for state workers.

Last week, The Associated Press reported that Governor Quinn has given 43 pay raises averaging 11.4 percent to members of his staff since he was named governor last year. Quinn defended the raises as needed to get the best employees and reward workers for taking on new responsibilities as he cut staff and reduced the office's overall spending by 35 percent.