The Edmond Sun

Local News

March 21, 2014

Murphey donates portion of pay to charity

EDMOND — State Rep. Jason Murphey, R-Guthrie, lives up to his call for legislative pay decreases.

Once again, Murphey has donated a percentage of his legislative salary to protect the unborn. He has given the Guthrie-based Crossroads Clinic $8,241.92 to sustain his mid-March tradition of giving back to the community.

“In order to reform government, we must cut out wasteful state government spending. I believe most Oklahomans feel it is not a good policy to pay legislators more than double the regional average,” Murphey said. “As legislators we must set the example for the rest of state government and that example will be much stronger if our legislators give up being some of the highest compensated part-time legislators in the nation.”

Reimbursement benefits are available for lodging, meals and travel expenses related to being a lawmaker.

According to the 2013 Legislative Manuel, state representatives earn $38,400 annually. Legislative salary is decided by nine members of a state board chosen by the governor, Speaker of the House and the President Pro Tempore.

The state of Oklahoma pays the Speaker of the House $56,332 annually. The Speaker Pro Tempore, minority leader and appropriations chair receive $50,764 in annual pay. Benefits for legislators include a retirement savings plan, life and health insurance.

Cost of living expenses in Oklahoma are among the lowest in the United States, Murphey said.

“It’s wrong to suggest that Oklahomans should expect to pay less for most other items but must pay much more for their legislators,” he stated.

Crossroads Clinic is a Christian-based nonprofit organization that provides pregnancy-related medical services, life-giving options education, client advocacy, support for prenatal care, parenting education, post-abortion peer counseling and abstinence education, Murphey said. Crossroads offers abortion-vulnerable women a scan to confirm viable pregnancies, he added.

Murphey pointed out that statistics show that 89 percent of women who terminate a pregnancy choose life for their unborn babies after seeing them through ultrasound and receiving valid information about their options.

jcoburn@edmondsun.com | 341-2121

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