Suffolk County Legislator Lou D'Amaro asks questions to members of...

Suffolk County Legislator Lou D'Amaro asks questions to members of the Budget Review Office about a pending motion to approve a bond to borrow money against state revenues during a meeting of the Suffolk Legislature in Riverhead. (Mar. 13, 2012) Credit: Ed Betz

Regarding "Suffolk County budget woes" [News, June 13], I believe legislators have to cut their own expenses, because the economic condition in our country and county is getting worse.

More than 315 people who work for the county will be without jobs come July 1. The county is reducing the number of people who provide essential services to the residents.

Suffolk spent more than $11 million on its legislature in 2008. The 18 legislators' salaries in 2009, for a part-time job, ranged from $86,196 to $105,352. Each has an office, and most have three aides. The salaries of their aides in 2009 ranged from $15,764 to $ 105,678, with the average at $56,140. The total cost of the aides' salaries is $3.2 million.

All these expenses are a waste of our tax money. Legislators' salaries in Nassau County are nearly $40,000, and in Westchester, just under $50,000. Nassau County's legislators do not have district offices.

Legislators in Suffolk County should make their salaries comparable to Nassau and Westchester's. They should eliminate their aides and give up their district offices. We could save at least $5 million.

Cesar A. Malaga, West Babylon

Editor's note: The writer is president of the Hispanic American Association, an advocacy organization, and lost a race for the Suffolk legislature last year.

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