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Mass. Fiscal Alliance Poll: State Lawmakers Pay Raise Unpopular With Likely Voters

The Massachusetts State House.
Flickr Creative Commons

A new statewide poll on Proposition 80 conducted by Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance, a non-profit group that advocates for fiscal responsibility, transparency and accountability in state government, found that half the respondents were aware that state legislators recently voted to increase their own pay by 40 percent.

The poll of 500 registered voters from June 16-19, 2017 shows nearly three-quarters of those polled said they would be less likely to support a lawmaker who voted in January for the 40 percent pay hike.

The poll also found nearly 75 percent of respondents were unaware of a 2018 ballot question, Proposition 80, that would increase taxes by 80 percent for those in the top income tax bracket.

Poll MFAlliance by wgbhnews on Scribd

Paul Craney, a member of the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance, warns the funds from the ballot question could end up funding the raise legislators approved.

“A lot of people know about that vote … in fact more people know about that vote than this ballot question.”

Craney says the poll indicates a lack of trust with how lawmakers spend taxpayer money.

“According to this poll, Republicans, Democrats, independents, conservatives, moderates and liberals, they all kind of agree … there’s just not trust on Beacon Hill with taxpayer money," Craney said. 

Proposition 80’s supporters claim the increased revenue from the tax hike would go toward important statewide programs.

The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percent.

To listen to this report, click on the audio player above.

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