AUGUSTA (AP) — A legislative committee has overwhelmingly endorsed a proposal to nearly double the annual salary of Maine’s next governor.

The State and Local Government Committee voted 11- 1 in favor of increasing the salary, which is now the lowest of any state in the nation. The Portland Press Herald reports the salary of the next governor would be increased from $70,000 to $150,000 if the legislation is approved by the Legislature.

The endorsement is a victory for current Republican Gov. Paul LePage, who has repeatedly asked lawmakers to boost the salary for his successor, previously bemoaning that the low pay made him feel like a priest or a nun.

The legislation to boost the governor’s pay will now face additional votes before the full Legislature.

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