House salary spending drops to lowest level in nearly four years
The total amount of salaries earned by House of Representative staffers in the second quarter of 2012 was about $166 million, the lowest amount since the third quarter of 2008.
LegiStorm published the 2012 second quarter House salaries today.
Total salary spending has trended down since Republicans took control of the House in 2011 with a message of cutting spending. The decrease in salaries is a reflection of the cuts to the overall House expense budgets. Each member's expense allowance - which covers all official expenses, including salaries - was cut 6.5 percent in 2012, on the heels of a 5 percent cut in 2011.
The second quarter salary spending is also down slightly from the first quarter, when House staffers earned $168 million. (These numbers include all House staffers, including members' aides, committee staffers and administrative staff.) Historically, salary spending is relatively constant through the first three quarters of the year, often dropping in the second and third quarter, before spiking in the fourth quarter as members pay bonuses to their staff.
The House released the salaries yesterday, covering the period from April 1 to June 30. LegiStorm entered the data into our database and went through an extensive process of cleaning up the data, in addition to researching and matching records with our existing database. For the second straight data release, we were able to make the information available on our website the day after the release.
The House releases salary numbers quarterly. The Senate releases salary numbers every six months, with the next release covering Senate salaries expected in November, covering the period from April through September.