Merced Rep. Jim Costa doesn’t want pay dur­ing shut­down

The Modesto Bee (Sunday) - - Local - BY LEWIS GRIS­WOLD lgris­[email protected]­ Lewis Gris­wold: 559- 441- 6104, @fb_LewGris­wold

Rep. Jim Costa, DMerced, said he does not want to get a pay­check dur­ing the gov­ern­ment shut­down be­cause fed­eral em­ploy­ees aren’t get­ting paid.

Costa wrote a let­ter Thurs­day to the chief ad­min­is­tra­tive of­fi­cer of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives stat­ing “I kindly re­quest that my salary be with­held” dur­ing the shut­down.

“Hun­dreds of thou­sands of fed­eral em­ploy­ees are ei­ther fur­loughed or re­quired to work with­out pay,” he wrote in the let­ter dated Jan. 3. “There should not be spe­cial rules for Mem­bers of Congress, and just like the af­fected em­ploy­ees, I ask that my pay be sus­pended as well.”

Mem­bers of Congress still get paid dur­ing a gov­ern­ment shut­down, but staffers and other fed­eral em­ploy­ees do not. Rep. Josh Harder, D-Tur­lock, will ac­cept a pay­check dur­ing the shut­down, his of­fice said Fri­day.

Among the fed­eral em­ploy­ees re­quired to work are those who work at the fed­eral prison in Men­dota and the prison in At­wa­ter.

In a news re­lease Wed­nes­day, Costa said he was again co-spon­sor­ing two bills that “make clear that mem­bers of Congress should not get paid un­less we do our jobs, in­clud­ing pass­ing a bud­get and keep­ing the gov­ern­ment open.”

The bills are spon­sored by Rep. Jim Cooper, DTen­nessee, and Rep. Kurt Schrader, D-Ore­gon, he said. Along with Costa, they are mem­bers of the so-called Blue Dog Coali­tion, also known as Blue Dog Democrats, who have a rep­u­ta­tion as cen­trists.

There are re­port­edly 24 Blue Dog Democrats in the new Congress.

Costa said he would vote for two ap­pro­pri­a­tions bills Wed­nes­day aimed at re­open­ing the gov­ern­ment.

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