Earlier this week, the Daily News ranked first-term Bronx Assemblyman Eric Stevenson #1  for claiming $31,351 in legislative per diem and travel payments in 2011.  Members of the state legislature earn a base pay of $79,000.

Freshman Bronx Assemblyman Eric Stevenson, who says his district is in “dire straits,”pocketed $31,351 worth of per diems. He insists he’s working hard in Albany and not sunbathing – “even though I wish I could.”

UPDATE: The Daily News followed up with its list of ‘Albany’s Top 10 Per Diem Collectors‘. Number two on the list is AM William Scarborough (D-Queens): $30,006; #3  AM Herman “Denny” Farrell (D-Manhattan): $27,739; #4  Sen. Michael Nozzolio (R-Seneca County): $26,991; #5  AM Earlene Hooper (D-Nassau County): $24,955; #6  AM Carl Heastie (D-Bronx): $24,306; #7  AM Gary Pretlow (D-Westchester County): $23,090; #8  AM Keith Wright (D-Manhattan): $22,484; #9  AM Venessa Gibson (D-Bronx): $21,892; and #10  Sen. Catherine Young (R-Chautauqua County): $21,770.
Last August, Gannett News reported that Stevenson claimed $26,468 in per diem and travel reimbursements from January-July 2011. When questioned, Stevenson told one newspaper that as freshman Member he had to be in Albany more often so he could learn his job.
YNN compiled the following comparison: Michael Benjamin – $11,431 (Jan-Jun 2010); Eric Stevenson – $19,944 (Jan-Jun 2011).
Read more here: Bronx assemblyman Eric Stevenson collected $31,351 in taxpayer-funded per diems – NY Daily News.
Assembly-Senate Per Diems (Jan 1 – June 29 2010/Jan 1- Jun 29 2011) — YNN
Related MichaelBenjamin2012 post – Freshman Bronx state lawmaker earns $26,468 in per diems in 6 months