The numbers are even larger in California, where a state psychiatrist was paid $822,000, a highway patrol officer collected $484,000 in pay and pension benefits and 17 employees got checks of more than $200,000 for unused vacation and leave. The best-paid staff in other states earned far less for the same work, according to the data.Bloomberg lays some of the blame on Governor Gray Davis (D-CA):
Nine years ago, California Democrat Gray Davis became the first U.S. governor in 82 years to be recalled by voters. The state’s 20 million taxpayers still bear the cost of his four years and 10 months on the job.To be fair to Gov. Davis, it was Gov. Jerry Brown (D-CA) deserves some blame too. He "granted state workers collective-bargaining rights during his first tenure as governor more than three decades ago."
Davis escalated salaries and benefits for 164,000 state workers, including a 34 percent raise for prison guards, the first of a series of steps in which he and successors saddled California with a legacy of dysfunction. Today, the state’s highest-paid employees make far more than comparable workers elsewhere in almost all job and wage categories, from public safety to health care, base pay to overtime.
Some liberal friends of mine like to quote Albert Einstein's dictum: "Problems cannot be solved with the same mind set that created them." If they took that quote seriously, they would be calling for all Democrats here to resign from office, at least until responsible adults could get the state's budget under control.
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