The Mississippi House has rejected about 40 proposals to give pay raises to state employees.
Democratic Rep. Johnny Stringer offered pay-raise amendments to bills Thursday and Friday, and they were repeatedly defeated in the Republican-controlled chamber.
House Appropriations Committee Chairman Herb Frierson says the state can't afford Stringer's plan. It would cost about $39 million to give raises of at least $1,000 to state workers.
The House approved only one proposal dealing with state employee pay raises, but it's not clear whether that will have any effect.
Democratic Rep. Preston Sullivan offered an amendment that says a plan would have to be developed to give $1,000 raises to Department of Education employees.
Frierson says that will be considered during final budget negotiations, but he's not sure if it will survive.