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CA Pays 1,400 Workers More Than $200,000

From the dogged on this subject Los Angeles Times:

California pays more than 1,400 workers in excess of $200,000

Many are prison doctors, dentists or nurses. Total compensation can be pushed higher by payouts for unused vacation and sick time. Last year, a prison doctor collected $777,423 and a dentist got $599,403.

By Jack Dolan, Los Angeles Times
July 6, 2011

More than 1,400 state employees were paid in excess of $200,000 last year, according to compensation data made public for the first time Tuesday on Controller John Chiang’s website.

Of those, 790 were prison doctors, dentists or nurses. More than 300 others were psychiatrists and other medical professionals working for the Department of Mental Health.

One prison doctor collected $777,423 in 2010 and a dentist took home $599,403, according to the website. The president of the state’s stem cell research agency received $482,234.

The database lists state positions by title and allows users to sort by department, salary range and total wages.

Chiang, a Democrat who has received millions in campaign contributions from state employee unions, did not include workers’ names even though that information is public and has been provided upon request for years

Chiang followed the same template in posting the state payroll. [Jacob Roper, a spokesman for Chiang] denied that the identities of employees were left out to avoid upsetting the politically powerful employee unions.

Lest we forget, this time last year Mr. Chiang blocked a mandated reduction of state employees salaries to minimum wage when California failed to produce a budget. Chiang claimed his computers could not handle the reductions. (They can only do increases.)

The omission frustrated open-government advocates who say taxpayers have a right to see exactly where their money is going.

"The name, the position and the amount of money being paid to public employees should not be concealed," said Robert Fellmeth, executive director of the Center for Public Interest Law at the University of San Diego.

You would think these public sector union employees would be proud of their hard won compensation. But it turns out that even they are capable of a modicum of shame.

Total compensation for many of the best-paid state jobs on Chiang’s list was pushed higher — in some cases more than doubled — by six-figure payouts for unused vacation and sick time.

A May analysis by The Times of Chiang’s database — a version obtained by request, which contained employee names and greater detail on payouts — showed a prison psychiatrist, Fong Lai, received $594,976 for more than 2 1/2 years worth of unused sick time. A prison dentist, Robert Stogsdill, got a $553,253 payout.

Managers of state agencies are supposed cap at 80 days the amount of unused vacation time their employees can save but routinely ignore the limit, The Times found.

In all, 309 state employees got lump payments in excess of $100,000 in 2010, the data show

Time is money. Especially sick and vacation time. But who gets money for un-used sick leave or vacation time in the private sector?

But regular pay can also be very high for prison healthcare professionals. Sixty-five hold jobs with salary ranges that exceed $300,000, according to Chiang’s website, which does not specify employees’ base salaries…

Four state jobs come with salary ranges that reach above $500,000, according to Chiang’s website.

Which just goes to prove how good governments are at holding down medical costs.

The chief investment officer for the state pension system can make up to $612,000. The president of the workers’ compensation insurance fund can make $585,360.

By contrast, Gov. Jerry Brown is paid $173,900 per year.

There really are two Americas.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, July 6th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

2 Responses to “CA Pays 1,400 Workers More Than $200,000”

  1. P. Aaron says:

    Can we get David Brooks to comment on this?

  2. Right of the People says:

    “By contrast, Gov. Jerry Brown is paid $173,900 per year. There really are two Americas.”

    #1- Jerry Brown is overpaid considering his abilities.

    #2- Kalifornia isn’t just another America, it’s from another universe. The part of the state between LA and SF is very nice and relatively normal and above SF is great but those two cities are where 99.9% of the problems lie. Kalifornia reminds me more of the UK with all of their regulations than a member state of these United States.

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