Quit public office or quit your day job.
That's the choice potentially facing a number of state legislators.
Last year, state Senator Mike Ranzenhofer (R-Amherst) reported making between $100,000 and $150,000 from his law firm alone. That would no longer be allowed under a ruling from the state pay commission this week to limit outside income.
"Just in the 24 hours since the preliminary report has been released, there's been a lot of discussion about many, many aspects of what they did so there will be many more people taking a look at this and whether or not it was legal, whether or not it was proper," Ranzenhofer said. "I'm sure this is just the first page of the book rather than the last chapter."
Ranzenhofer said regardless of whether the ruling was within the commission's purview, he believed it's bad policy.
"What you'll have is you'll have a class of professional politicians that will rule in the state legislature from here to eternity if this stands," he said.
Assemblymember Sean Ryan, like Ranzenhofer, is an attorney, but he has a very different stance.
"Right now more than two-thirds of the members have no outside income. So the people with any substantial outside income, they're really the anomaly," he said. "You've seen a lot of scandals in the state legislature over the last few years. Most of them revolved around somebody trying to claim outside income that was really closer to a bribe."
Last year, Ryan reported only $5,000 - $20,000 in outside income generated from a rental property.
"I had a vision of maintaining a little bit of law practice when I got into office but I find this position to be so all encompassing, I have not been able to do any substantial practice of law," he said.
Regardless of what happens moving forward, Ranzenhofer noted he'll have at least a year to make his decision. He said it's something he'll discuss with his family, clients and constituents.