What they earn

Staff WriterMay 9, 2006 

State lawmakers earn $13,951 a year, a wage that has not increased in a decade.

They get a fixed $6,708 annual expense allowance.

They also get $104 a day for lodging and meals while they're in session. This payment is based on the number of calendar days from the start of the session to its end, not the number of business days lawmakers meet. Sometimes legislators refuse the daily expense payments, especially toward the end of long sessions or if they live close to Raleigh.

And they are paid 29 cents a mile for one weekly trip from home to Raleigh during sessions.

The legislature's top leaders -- Senate President Pro Tempore Marc Basnight and House Speaker Jim Black, both Democrats -- get paid more: a salary of $38,151 a year, plus an expense allowance of $16,956. Their daily expense payments and mileage reimbursements are the same as for rank-and-file members.

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