As salaries among private practitioners in Connecticut have increased significantly over the years, the incremental pay hikes given state judges lags far behind and threatens to dissuade lawyers from sitting on the bench.

With Superior Court judges earning $146,780 per year as of Jan. 1, 2007, Connecticut ranks ninth in the country in actual salary but 39th when cost of living is considered, according to a 2007 report from the National Center for State Courts.