We could start with State employee pay. From a USA Today synopsis of a recently-released BLS study, we learn:
State and local government workers now earn an average of $39.50 per hour in total compensation, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Private workers earn an average of $26.09 an hour.
Benefits are a big reason for the gap.
Companies have trimmed pension benefits and asked employees to pay a greater share of medical costs.
Few governments have imposed similar cuts on teachers, snowplow drivers, lawyers and other civil servants.
From 2000 to 2007, public employees enjoyed a 16% increase in compensation after adjusting for inflation compared with 11% for private workers.
That means that the State could cut its wages or salaries paid by about 33% and retain the bennies as-is (more or less) to be "competitive" with private-sector workers.
Naturally, counties and cities should follow suit--not to mention school districts.
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The state is already at a crisis level in terms of the criminal justice system which puts everyone in a huge bind.
The base prosecutor pay is $46,000 but there is no step system so it's annual percentage increases.
Puttint it in real dollars, I was paid $24,000 in 1982. That would be over $51,000 today...and back then we had a step system and pay progression.
The state's own statistics show that they are 132 prosecutors short on top of the problems caused by the pay scale.
Maybe if they would cut the public defender budget and make them work as hard as prosecutors some money could be saved. But the governor and legislature are in love with criminals.
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