Government reports show a gap between public and private sector salaries in Chico – public salaries still way ahead

19 Dec

Thanks Kelly for sending me that link to State Controller John Chiang’s website:

There I found some of the latest statistics on the city of Chico, it’s residents, and it’s  employees:


Residents: 87,671

Employees: 471

Residents per employee: 186

Average wages: $67,645

Average retirement & health cost: $31,940

Total wages: $31,860,950

Total retirement & health cost: $15,043,727

I also like to look at the US Census “Quick Facts” website, here’s the page for Chico:

There you’ll see, it looks like the latest figure for median household income has actually gone up since the last time I checked – it used to be around $38,000, now they have it listed at about $42,000. Well, whoop – eee.  Above you see the “average” wage for a city of Chico worker listed at $67,645.

I know, “median,” and “average” are two different things. “Median” is funny – you stack up the numbers – which may be wildly different from each other, or may be very much the same – from most to least, and then you pick the number that is physically dead center in the middle. What does that mean? And “average” – you add up a stack of numbers, which, again, may be very similar or may be wildly different, and then you divide by the number of numbers. Again, what does that mean? 

Excuse me, I don’t even want to get started on “mean.”

Anyway, when I researched this matter, I found a salary study that showed “average” and “median” salary figures for Phoenix, Arizona. These figures were within a few dollars of each other. Don’t ask me how that works. But, I’m going to assume that the figures are similar here, and I’m going to compare the “average” salary I got for public workers with the “median” salary I got for the general public. There’s a gap of about $25,000. 

At this moment, I’d like to make it known to any of you city of Chico workers out there, I’m available for lunch most weekdays.  I have very inexpensive tastes – I like restaurants on wheels. In fact, since you’ll be paying, I could be persuaded to come out to the Farmer’s Market some Saturday morning for a quick tamale. 

I can’t be bought, but I could be adopted. 


4 Responses to “Government reports show a gap between public and private sector salaries in Chico – public salaries still way ahead”

  1. Michael Jones December 19, 2013 at 4:21 pm #

    The State Controller’s numbers show that City of Chico employees average higher combined wages and benefits than employees of the City of San Francisco and the City of Beverly Hills.

    • Juanita Sumner December 20, 2013 at 7:24 am #

      Thanks so much for bringing that up – I didn’t have time to look the website over too much yesterday.

      In past I’ve seen that our police make as much as officers in much larger cities. When I’ve sat in on these discussions, they’ve mentioned “comparable cities” – they never use Redding or any other same-size cities close to us, they always use Bay Area and SoCal cities. When I’ve pointed this out to council and staff members, I get the usual blank stare.

      Thanks for your letter to the editor Michael, I saved it, do you mind if I re-run it here?

  2. Michael Jones December 20, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

    Hi Juanita,
    You’re welcome to rerun any letters I write 🙂

    • Juanita Sumner December 20, 2013 at 12:32 pm #

      Thanks! I’ve been collecting a pile of stuff regarding police compensation, I’m going to have to sit down and blog it when I get the chance this weekend.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: