How did we let public salaries become what they are? |

How did we let public salaries become what they are?

I have known for years what the “Show Me The Money” article in the Nov. 7, 2014, Sun told all readers.

Growing up in the 50s and 60s, my dad told me if I got an education and/or became a professional I would always make more money then a public servant. Boy have things changed.

When I started out in public accounting years ago, I was auditing a city in the Bay Area. The accountant for the city was a young guy like me. I always felt a little smug — I was the CPA, and he was a lowly city accountant. Lo and behold, years later, he became the city manager.

His salary and benefit package was public information. Even though I was making good money as a self-employed CPA, I was eating his dust. His salary and benefit package made me wish I went into the public sector.

I am not asking that public servants work for free. But their pay package and benefits exceed what cities, towns and counties can afford to pay. Next time you are chatting in your front yard with your neighbor and he works for government, you now know his dirty little secret.

His salary is larger than yours and so will be his retirement package. As guess what — you are paying for it.

Michael Arata


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