Local government employees earned a total of more than $41 billion – the highest since 2009, the first year for which the state compiled compensation data.
Before undercover auditors carrying hidden weapons slipped undetected past security screeners at U.S. airports, the official ultimately responsible for the lapses received cash bonuses and awards that reached nearly $100,000, according to a whistleblower complaint.
Reveal has updated its Payday California site, which tracks how local government employees are compensated, with 2013 data, the latest available from the state.
More than 35,000 California state employees have gone over the official cap of 80 vacation days. The state owes those employees $447 million more than it would if they had been held to the cap.
Although the salaries of government employees are public, most taxpayers know little about whether these paychecks, which typically represent more than a third of communities’ spending, are fair.
Making sense of public employee compensation is no easy task.
Four years after a small working-class town near Los Angeles became a cautionary tale of government excess, a state effort to avoid a repeat performance is falling short.