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No pay raises till 2012: Bobby Jindal

July 03, 2008 12:21 IST

Indian-American Governor of Louisiana Bobby Jindal has said he will veto any legislative pay raise proposals that include the salary hike taking effect before the year 2012.

"My message to them is, look, let's put this mistake behind us. But let me be clear - no pay raise that goes into effect before the next election will get off my desk," Jindal, a top contender for Republican vice presidential ticket said on Wednesday.

The next general election for state legislators is scheduled for October 2011 and those elected will take office in January 2012.

On Monday, Jindal had vetoed a bill that would have doubled the salaries of state legislators.

The pay raise had infuriated voters, leading some to file 'recall petitions' against the governor and two of his top allies in the Legislature.

Jindal, 37, also vetoed two more bills Tuesday night that would affect those filing ethics complaints against public officials.

He struck down House Bill 906, which would require officials to disclose to someone accused of wrongdoing the identity of an accuser. He also stopped Senate Bill 53, which would have forbidden ethics officials from investigating anonymous complaints.

"I am concerned that this requirement may discourage citizens from reporting misconduct for fear of reprisal," Jindal wrote as his reasoning in both veto messages.

Rejecting anonymous complaints at face value will result in incidents of actual misconduct not being prosecuted, he added.

The same concerns have led the US Office of Government Ethics and at least 20 states to use anonymous complaints, Jindal wrote in his veto of the bill sponsored by state Sen Buddy Shaw, R-Shreveport.

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