Cuomo Cuts His Salary By 5 Percent in Tough Times

Says he'll give that portion of his pay - $8,950 -- back to state

Monday, Jan 3, 2011  |  Updated 4:09 PM EDT
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New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo speaks during a press conference about recalled Toyota cars February 24, 2010 in New York City. Cuomo, thought to be a possible candidate for New York governor, has reached an agreement with the car company to provide Toyota owners in New York with alternative transportation and other perks in the aftermath of the massive recall of Toyota automobiles.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he's taking a 5 percent pay cut, along with five top aides and Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy.

Cuomo says he'll return to the state that portion of the $179,000 governor's salary, which was set by law in 1999. It amounts to $8,950.

"Change starts at the top and we will lead by example," Governor Cuomo said in a statement. "Families and business owners in every corner of the state have learned to do more with less in order to live within their means and government must do the same."

Staff in the Executive Chamber agreeing to similar cuts from their predecessors' salaries are the governor's secretary, counsel, director of state operations, counselor and chief of staff.

Other chamber expenses are also under review.

Cuomo says Monday that New Yorkers have learned to do more with less in order to live within their means, and the government has to do the same.

He has proposed a pay freeze for the state's nearly 200,000 employees to help deal with a looming $9 billion budget deficit.

"The Governor's announcement of cuts in the Executive Chamber budget, including cuts to his own salary, demonstrate that sacrifices will be necessary in all aspects of State government if New York is to regain its fiscal health," Carol Kellermann, president of the Citizens Budget Commission said in a statement released by Cuomo's press office.

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