A Sacramento Superior Court Judge affirmed his earlier, tentative ruling Wednesday after hearing from both sides of the issue in court. Steinberg says the ruling is a victory for upholding the separation of powers.
"The bottom line is you can't empower any official to leverage the pay of elected officials to try to achieve a result."
Controller John Chiang stopped lawmakers' pay last year, after Governor Jerry Brown vetoed their spending plan. Both called it unbalanced. Chiang says he was acting under authority of voter-approved Proposition 25. It said lawmakers' pay could be docked if they did not approve a balanced budget by June 15th.
Chiang says Wednesday's court ruling gives lawmakers the sole authority to determine if they've done their job and deserve their pay. He says he will review options with the state Attorney General to determine the next steps.