Crow is chewy

Monday’s Register printed a letter to the editor accusing Rep. Bill Otto of sneaking a pay raise into House Bill 2069.
The writer, a Dirk Moss from Haven, substantiated the claim with what seemed valid numbers. I did the math and concluded he was right. Trouble is, his information was old. What Moss claimed were new increases, some by as much as 36 percent, occurred last year.
Otto’s bill, according to Duane Goossen, director of the budget, would in fact, reduce a legislator’s pay by 10 percent. The bill remains yet to get out of committee, meaning it’s unlikely to go anywhere.
Moran resident Bill LaPorte, who surely reads the Register with razor in hand, eager to slash its liberal-leaning editorials, alerted me to the discrepancies in the letter.
I then contacted my helpmates in Topeka, Associated Press re-porters Carl Manning and John Hanna, who cover the Legislature.
The letter stumped them for the better part of a morning until they discovered the writer was using an outdated version of the statute, and in reading Otto’s bill took the amounts to be increases.
Only those who dabble in the details would be the wiser, which, of course, is the reporter’s respon-sibility to her readers.

A GLASS of wine helped wash down last night’s crow. But it did little for the bitter aftertaste.

— Susan Lynn