New York's State Legislature spent over $102 million during the six-month period ending last March, according to the latest legislative expenditure data posted at SeeThroughNY. The expenditure information, which goes back to 2007, can be sorted by reporting period, expenditure type, and member name. Users can also isolate spending for individual units of the Legislature's central staff.
Ranked by office expenditures, highest-spending members in the Senate and Assembly for the most recent period available were Senator Dean Skelos (R-Long Island) at $477,558 and Assemblyman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan) at $437,762, respectively. Skelos was Senate majority leader through the end of calendar year 2012 and has been co-leader of the majority coalition since then, and Gottfried is longtime chairman of the Assembly Health Committee.
Since October 2007, the earliest reporting period available on SeeThroughNY's legislative expenditure database, Senator Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester) has led all members of the upper house with office expenditures of $5.3 million. In the Assembly, Gottfried's office topped the list, having spent over $4.8 million during the same period.
While the data do include Senate and Assembly member and staff wages, it does not account for benefit costs, which can exceed thirty percent of an employee's annual wages.
Tim Hoefer, executive director of the Empire Center, noted that the legislative spending data is limited in several respects:
the data are released only in six-month chunks;
reports are released on a 5-month lag basis; and
the data cover periods of April through September and October through March, conforming to a full state fiscal year, rather than to legislative terms, which are based on calendar years.
The 15 highest-spending members in each house for the most recent period available are shown in the tables below. A full ranking of all members is available by clicking here.
To view the database, click here.