Sunday, March 29, 2009

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Employee Salaries Higher Than Rendell

Take a good look at your paycheck this week. You may wish you worked for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Tracie Mauriello of the Harrisburg bureau for the Post-Gazette wrote an interesting piece about the salaries of state workers who are paid more than Governor Rendell.

Here are some of the highlights.

At least 96 state employees are paid more than Gov. Ed Rendell, whose salary is $174,435. All together, at least 656 have salaries in excess of $150,000. At least 3,836 are paid more than $100,000 a year.

That's a big bill footed by taxpayers, and government watchdog groups say high salaries should be scrutinized carefully. The state employees' bosses, of course, say they earn every penny.

John C. Cavanaugh, chancellor of the State System of Higher Education, tops the list with a $327,500 salary. That's 7 Â 1/2 times as much as the average Pennsylvanian makes in a year. Still, it's much less than the $558,378 that the state of Georgia pays the chancellor of its university system.

With a salary of $320,000, James Preston, executive director of the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, isn't far behind Mr. Cavanaugh.

Stephen M. Curtis, president of the Community College of Philadelphia, comes in third with compensation of $227,584, including a $37,500 housing and car allowance.

Similar research two years ago by The Patriot-News of Harrisburg found that 79 employees were paid more than the governor in 2007, when his pay was $164,396. At that time, 550 were paid more than $150,000, and 3,030 more than $100,000.

In many cases, employees are being paid tens of thousands more than the executives and administrators who supervise them.

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