Palin won't take pay raise — even if it's deserved

ANCHORAGE — Gov. Sarah Palin says she didn't ask for a pay raise and won't accept one during her current term.

That's from her spokesman, Bill McAllister, who says he talked to the governor about the $25,000 raise that a new state commission is recommending this week.

It's unclear if Palin would give the money to charity — as commission chairman Rick Halford suggested — or simply not receive the extra pay.

"The point is she's not going to take it home. It's not going to end up in her bank account," McAllister said.

"We need the best people we can get to do some pretty tough jobs against some often incredibility well-financed, single-minded corporate and individual interests," Halford said as chairman of the new State Officers Compensation Commission.

Deciding how much to pay themselves is always a thorny proposition for politicians who answer to an ever-skeptical public. Today's national recession and relatively low oil prices wouldn't make it any easier.

Enter the new five-member commission, created by the Legislature earlier this year to take the decision out of lawmakers' hands. The members are appointed by the governor -- with two selected from lists recommended by legislative leaders.

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