Sunday, January 07, 2007

Judgment Pay

Agreeing with a Bush Administration appointee isn’t something I get to do everyday. As I mentioned in my post , In Public Service the discrepancy in pay between the private and public sectors is a difficult subject that needs to be addressed. U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts talked of nothing else in his annual report, according to the Raleigh News & Observer.

Not only is this subject a difficult one to address, it must be addressed constantly. Associate judges top out at just over $200,000 per year. Again, all things being relative, it just doesn’t stack up against what a good lawyer can earn in the private sector.

Judgeships at this level are lifetime appointments. But few qualified individuals are willing to condemn themselves to a lifetime of inferior pay. Lifetime appointments are a cornerstone in building an independent judiciary. We can ill afford another government job turning into a “revolving door” to private industry.

You cannot serve two masters. It’s bad enough that much of civil service keeps an eye on potential future employers when making decisions that should be made solely in the Public’s interest. We don’t need this distraction creeping into the judiciary.

Don Brown
January 7, 2007

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