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State Sen. Nicholas Scutari. Photo by Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe

Scutari bill targeting Armstead advances

By Nikita Biryukov, March 08 2019 11:18 am

A Senate panel advanced a bill sponsored by Sen. Nicholas Scutari that would retroactively bar elected officials from giving themselves retroactive salary increases.

“Elected officials should not have the capability to give themselves retroactive salary increases,” Scutari said. “As elected officials in the legislature, we are prohibited from giving ourselves retroactive raises and bonuses. Your bonus is the pride of a job well done and serving your constituents and the people of NJ. No elected official should be able to collect back pay upon salary increases; this legislation extends this basic standard to all elected offices in the state.”

The bill is aimed at Linden Mayor Derek Armstead, who last year received a retroactive pay raise that saw his salary bumped from $73,425 to $100,000. He received a check for the difference.

Derek’s Law would into effect on Dec. 1, 2018, a few weeks before the measure giving Armstead his raise did.

Scutari and Armstead have long feuded. The senator, who is also Union County Democratic Chairman, fielded a candidate to oust Armstead in his primary last year.

Armstead won that race, and Armstead has since tried to have Scutari removed from his role as municipal prosecutor.

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