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Pritzker to sign state budget, including lawmaker pay raise

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 12: Illinois gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker speaks to reporters at the Idas Legacy Fundraiser Luncheon on April 12, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The luncheon helps support the Ida B. Wells Legacy Committee which works to develop progressive female African-American political candidates. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker says he will sign the state budget as is, including $1,600 pay increases for the 177 members of the state General Assembly.

That means Pritzker won’t invoke a constitutional power that would let him block the raises while letting the rest of the state budget take effect. Pritzker said Tuesday that it was a “highly negotiated” budget with Republicans and Democrats involved so “I’m going to sign the budget that we put forward.”

Pritzker also defended state lawmakers, saying he was surprised at “how hard these legislators are working.” He says they’re away from their families and working night and day.

The raise comes from a 2.4% cost-of-living adjustment to legislators’ base salary of $67,836. It’s the first pay raise for lawmakers since 2008.

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