Feud reopens as Dayton hikes agency head pay

Published 9:31 am Wednesday, July 1, 2015

ST. PAUL — Gov. Mark Dayton says some executive branch commissioners will see salaries reach $154,000 as part of pay raises he has authorized.

Dayton said today he was enacting pay increases mirroring those he outlined earlier this year that were blocked by lawmakers. As part of a deal, the Legislature let Dayton unilaterally impose raises on July 1. Any decisions made after that date would be subject to lawmaker approval.

Most agency commissioners earned about $120,000 before. The Democratic governor says higher salaries will make top positions competitive with managerial posts in the private sector and local government. But Republicans say Dayton’s raises are out of step with slower growth in family incomes.

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Senate Minority Leader David Hann predicted the raises would be a 2016 campaign topic.