West Va. Senate passes bill to increase judicial pay

The current West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals is made up of (from left to right) Justice Margaret Workman, Justice Evan Jenkins, Chief Justice Elizabeth Walker, Justice John Hutchison, and Justice Tim Armstead. (Source: WVSUPCO)
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The West Virginia Senate on Monday passed a bill to give pay raises to judges statewide.

The bill passed on a 29-3 vote. It now goes to the House of Delegates.

The West Virginia Judicial Compensation Commission recommended the raises in August, saying judges in the state are among the lowest paid in the country.

Supreme Court, circuit and magistrate judges would get 18.3% raises. Supreme Court justices would be paid almost $161,000 under the commission’s recommendations. Circuit judges would be paid $149,000 while magistrates would be paid $68,000.

Family court judges would receive a more than 20% pay increase to bring their salaries up to nearly $114,000.

The commission said the raises would bring West Virginia in line with national pay scales.

The last judicial pay increase occurred in 2011.

Similar bills died in both chambers of the legislature last year.