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Top Mass. Lawmakers Handing Out Raises To Staffers

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BOSTON (CBS/AP) — Massachusetts’ two top lawmakers are handing out raises to hundreds of staffers even as the state faces declining revenues that could force budget cuts.

House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Therese Murray agreed to the 3 percent raises last week.

The Democratic leaders have the authority to dole out raises. House employees haven’t seen an increase since 2008.

While DeLeo gave the 3 percent raise to 460 House employees, Murray gave the raises just to her staff.

A spokesman for Murray said individual senators control their own office and staff and can make their own decisions about raises.

State tax collections for the past four months have fallen below expectations.

“The Senate and House have to manage their budgets just as I have to manage within mine,” says Governor Deval Patrick. “So as long as they manage within that budget, that’s up to them.”

Gov. Patrick said Monday he’s waiting to see November revenues before making any decisions about potential budget cuts.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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