In the early morning hours of July 7, 2005, State Representative Rick Geist and a majority of the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed pay increases for themselves, judges, and top executive-branch officials. The vote took place at 2 in the morning without public review or commentary and Governor Ed Rendell signed the bill into law. The raise increased legislators' base pay from 16% to 34% depending on position.
After the pay increase vote and contrary to the Constitution of Pennsylvania Geist practically ran to the paymaster window pushing people out of his way to collect his illegal pay raise. Later, November 16, 2005, Governor Rendell signed a repeal of the pay raise after a near unanimous vote for repeal. Most of the legislators wrote checks to repay their ill gotten gains.
When Geist was asked if he was going to return the pay raise money he took he first said he was giving to his church for their parking lot. Later he claimed he repaid the money to the State treasury. One area resident inquired with Harrisburg about whether Geist had repaid the money as he claimed. The resident was told he needed to go to Harrisburg to get that information. He claimed that he went to Harrisburg but found no record of repayment by Geist. Recently a Geist campaign member was asked again about repayment of the pay raise. The representative confirmed taht Geist repaid the money and that he, a member of Geist's campaign, claimed that he saw the cancelled check. When the citizen asked the Geist camp to show him the cancelled check and to make the cancelled check public they declined. Why?
People want to believe Geist. But as Clara Pella would say: "Hey Geist! Where’s the check? Show us the check!"
Contact Geist's office Altoona Office: Gables Building, Suite 104, 1331 Twelfth Avenue, Altoona, PA 16601
Phone: 814-946-7218, Fax: 814-949-7915 or contact his Harrisburg office Phone: 717-787-6419 or Fax: 717-772-5142
Call and ask him if he to show you the cancelled check made out to the state treasury. "Where's the check."
 Article 2 Section 8 of the Constitution of Pennsylvania states: Compensation The members of the General Assembly shall receive such salary and mileage for regular and special sessions as shall be fixed by law, and no other compensation whatever, whether for service upon committee or otherwise. No member of either House shall during the term for which he may have been elected, receive any increase of salary, or mileage, under any law passed during such term.
Article 3, Section 1
Changes in Term of Office or Salary Prohibited
No law shall extend the term of any public officer, or increase or diminish his salary or emoluments, after his election or appointment.
(Emolument: salary, fee, or profit from employment or office (from the Merriam Webster dictionary)
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