Government Employees Are The Most Equal Of All

   Do not think about, write about or deal with  human behavior without determining the effects of incentives. It’s not their money, of course they’ll waste it.

    Wherein we see that state employees, conditioned by the school system that they are the only ones in society who do good, insist that they do well. If the average non-government wage in California is $36,000 per annum, even a modest government salary of 200K is a multiple of 5.5. Since most government employees believe they are 10 times better than we lesser folk, (That’s an estimate, it’s probably higher) they are underpaid.

Stunning data on average compensation for municipal employees in California

By Thomas Lifson

Forget the old-fashioned term “civil servants”; America’s new ruling class is government employees.  Would you like your kids to go to work for an outfit where employees average between two hundred grand and a quarter mill?  Forget about investment banks or law firms; tell them to go to work for a fire protection district in California.

Transparent California, a project of two free-market think tanks, the California Policy Center and the Nevada Policy Research Institute, has released a database of municipal (cities, towns, and special-purpose districts such as water and fire protection districts) employee salaries that is stunning.  The North Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area had the highest averages, but other areas of that metropolis and the state as a whole also featured extraordinary averages, not to say individual cases.

Some highlights:

The average full-time compensation for employees of 55 North Bay cities was $130,172 in 2013, with thousands earning more than $200,000 a year and hundreds more earning more than $50,000 in overtime alone.  Such compensation is significantly higher than that of peers in the private sector.

Two thousand and six North Bay municipal employees earned at least $200,000.

    Walter Shuld, San Pablo Police Chief, earned $440,983.
    Malcolm E. Miller, Oakland Police Officer, earned $436,256.
    George R. Silva, Hayward Battalion Chief, earned $428,457.
    488 North Bay municipal employees earned at least $50,000 in overtime alone.
    Angel Bobo, Richmond Fire Captain,, made $279,105 in overtime and $508,893 in total compensation.
    Marc Palechek, Richmond Fire Captain, made $241,578 in overtime and $450,942 in total compensation.
    Stanley Eng, Vallejo Police Corporal, made $221,073 in overtime and $425,660 in total compensation.


    2006? Imagine the indignation of the “underpaid.”

Note that most of these cities are not affluent, and some, like San Pablo and Richmond, are considered poor and troubled.  Vallejo, which pays a fire captain 450K, went through bankruptcy and laid off a substantial portion of its police force.


Average full-time municipal employee compensation statewide was $120,569.

Eleven thousand two hundred and three municipal employees took home over $200,000, with 3,661 making over $50,000 in overtime.

Average full-time municipal employee compensation for other regions in California were:

    South Bay: $141,739
    Greater Sacramento: $109,785
    Central Valley: $99,678
    Greater Los Angeles: $119,462
    Greater San Diego: $114,329
    Northern California: $108,269
    Central Coast: $111,784

Average full-time special district employee compensation was $106,592.

Average full-time special district compensation for the top five districts were:

    San Ramon Valley Fire Protection: $245,624
    Rodeo-Hercules Fire Protection District: $237,424
    Montecito Fire Protection: $214,363
    Woodside Fire Protection District: $211,998
    Central County Fire Department: $208,583

Looking at my own town, Berkeley, I see that almost 50 people are earning over a quarter of a million dollars.  Wow!  I went into the wrong line of work.  These people get a lot of holidays and vacation days, too.


     Yes, but pretending to work is arduous and must be compensated accordingly. Servants soon become masters when backed by an intricate, coercive taxation system. Look it up, it’s in all the books.

Government Job or Respect–Which’ll It Be?
Cheerio and ttfn,
Grant Coulson, Ph.D.
Author, “Days of Songs and Mirrors: A Jacobite in the ‘45.”
Cui Bono–Cherchez les Contingencies


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