Campus Notebook: Staying Steady

Posted January 20, 2010 at 6:50pm

House Members won’t get much of an increase in their office budgets this year, receiving an average bump of less than 1 percent.

[IMGCAP(1)]The House Administration Committee alerted Members this week of their 2010 Members’ Representational Allowance, which pays for staff salaries, office supplies, travel and other official costs. Each office gets $1.4 million to $1.9 million, based on factors such as the distance they must travel to their district and how many constituents they represent.

House officials followed the lead of the executive branch and gave offices a 2.42 percent increase in their allocation for staff salaries, said Kyle Anderson, spokesman for House Administration Chairman Robert Brady (D-Pa.). Other allocations within the MRA — such as a franking allotment — got less of an increase, evening out the average total increase to 0.98 percent.

In 2009, the committee significantly increased MRAs, citing the economic downturn and the need for more constituent services. That increase — an average of $90,000 per office — is now part of a Member’s base MRA and was included in the 2010 budgets.

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