State lawmakers boost compensation for electors

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OLYMPIA — Washington lawmakers are increasing compensation for people who are chosen to cast the state's official Electoral College votes.

The state Senate gave final approval Friday to a plan that would give presidential electors a larger per diem and compensation for mileage. Current law was enacted in the 1800s, providing only a $5 daily per diem and compensation of 10 cents per mile.

The new law would align elector compensation with allowances given to state officials, providing enough money to cover meals, lodging and mileage.

Presidential electors of the winning political party gather in Olympia in December following presidential elections. The process is generally viewed as a formality, but the votes of electors from each state are what officially determine which candidate becomes president.

The measure passed by a 38-10 margin.