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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Records from the Alabama state comptroller and the budget office show that the payroll for House Speaker Mike Hubbard’s office increased significantly while wages for state employees were essentially frozen.

A local newspaper reports payroll for Hubbard staffers increased by 41 percent between 2011 and 2013. The newspaper reports that staffers in legislative offices aren’t generally included in the state worker classification system.

Hubbard’s office pays a larger number of employees than in the past and his spokeswoman Rachel Adams says employee pay increases were based on merit evaluations and expanding workloads.

Adams says staffers in Hubbard’s office are working for the house speaker and Republican lawmakers in the state House of Representatives.

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