July 3, 2015

Budget restrictions mean no raise for transportation employees, either

Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission member Joe Carmichael (courtesy; Missouri Department of Transportation)

Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission member Joe Carmichael (courtesy; Missouri Department of Transportation)

Transportation Department employees, like other state employees, will not be getting a raise because of actions taken by Governor Jay Nixon (D) with the budget.

One of the items Governor Nixon has put a halt on funding in the new budget is a one-percent, across-the-board raise in pay for state employees.

The Transportation Commission can act independently of that budget, but Commissioner Joe Carmichael says it follows what other state agencies do, so a matching raise for transportation employees is also on hold.

“There was also a $25 a month employee deferred comp match, and that is part of the withholding as well,” says Carmichael. “Again, we’ll follow suit, and those are very difficult things.”

Carmichael expresses optimism the restriction will not be permanent.

“We expect once state revenues improve and the state budget becomes more certain that those will be lifted,” says Carmichael. “That’s certainly our hope and, I think, it’s a reasonable expectation.”

Carmichael also noted the restriction of $1-million for the state transit assistance program and $3-million for capital improvements to ports.

Nixon says the legislature’s budget was more than 780-million dollars out-of-balance. Lawmakers say he is using inflated and inaccurate numbers.