Unlike in the state Senate, where leader Darrell Steinberg asked each senator to voluntarily take a 5 percent pay cut (and 38 of 40 have complied), Assembly Speaker Karen Bass has not asked members to do the same.
Instead, the Assembly has taken other budget-cutting steps, such as a reduction in staff, to achieve a 10 percent savings.
Still, about two dozen of the 80 members of the Assembly have taken voluntary pay cuts. Republican Audra Strickland of Moorpark was the latest to do so, sending a letter to Controller John Chiang this week requesting that her paycheck be reduced by 5 percent.
Other members of the Ventura County delegation say they are considering such a move, but have not yet decided. Republican Cameron Smyth, who represents much of Simi Valley, has asked Chiang to reduce his pay by whatever percentage state workers' pay may be reduced in a budget-balancing package.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is seeking a 5 percent reduction in state workers' pay, but that proposal is not part of the budget plan backed by the Democratic-controlled Legislature. Smyth is asking to take only any actual cut in pay -- not the equivalent of an 8 percent-plus cut that state workers have already taken as a result of being placed on unpaid furlough two days per month.
Democrats Pedro Nava of Santa Barbara and Julia Brownley of Santa Monica, who combined represent all of Ventura, Oxnard and Port Hueneme, say they are still weighing the issue. Both cite the cost-saving measures their offices have already implemented. Brownley also notes that, as a result of a recent action by the Citizens Compensation Commission, she will already face an 18 percent salary reduction late next year if she is re-elected.
Members of the Legislature are paid $116,208 a year.