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Legislative Net Worth

November 22nd, 2016 by flanews

Politics and money usually go hand-in-hand, and it’s no different in Florida’s legislature. As Matt Galka tells us, even though net worth has dropped slightly in Florida’s capitol, there’s still plenty of money flowing for the people elected to serve.

The total net worth of the Florida legislature took a small dip with a new class of lawmakers getting elected. But there are still 53 millionaires getting ready to write laws for people in all tax brackets.

Freshman Republican Senator George Gainer takes the top wealth spot – reporting $27.9 million dollars.

Gainer’s a successful businessman who owns car dealerships in the Florida panhandle and says he can still relate to the average Floridian.

“I was a county commissioner for 18 years and I guarantee that will teach you what the people are thinking and that will have you understand what the needs of the people are and what you can do over here and what you can’t. I intend to do everything I can and not worry about the rest of it,” he said.

The average state senator is worth $3.5 million. The average state house member, almost $1.5 million.

 Newly elected House Democrat Carlos Guillermo Smith says there’s still a lot of work to be done in the Capitol to better represent the people of the state

“The reality is, legislators are paid $29,000 per year so the outcome is we have lawmakers who are peronsally wealthy, who are the only ones who can afford to take time out of the year to come up here and make laws, and as a result we aren’t passing good policy, he said.

And when it comes to which party is wealthier – Republicans in both chambers are banking more than the Democrats on average.

Eight Florida House members and two Senators are on the opposite ends of the financial spectrum with ten total lawmakers entering the chambers in debt.

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