Average City Salary Well Above Average Residents'

City releases details of 2011 payroll

News Analysis

The city of Alameda recently released the 2011 salaries of its city employees.

The salaries of many public workers, specifically the heads of many departments, may come as a surprise to residents of Alameda. Fifty public workers in the city of Alameda made $200,000 or more in 2011.

The highest paid city worker was police captain James S. Brock. Brock made $409,879 in 2011, nearly $50,000 more than the $361,583 chief of police Mike Noonan — the second highest paid public worker last year — made in 2011.

In fact, nine of the top 10 highest paid city employees in 2011 worked in either the fire or police department.

The sole worker outside the fire and police department in the top 10 was Alameda Municipal Power general manager Girish Balachandran who was 10th with $240,812 in pay and benefits.

For some city employees, their base salary was just a portion of their total earnings. For example, Brock's total earning was more than Noonan's, but Noonan's base salary was $185,791 compared to Brock's $127,752.

Brock made a chunk of his gross salary in uniform and equipment allowance pay $1,175, retention pay $17,000 and leave payoff or deferred compensation conversion pay $164,739.

In all, 77 percent of city workers made more than $75,000 last year.

Other categories that the city paid employees other than base pay included: holiday in-lieu pay, education incentive and auto allowance.

In all, 77 percent of city workers made more than $75,000 last year, 44 percent earned $100,000 to $199,000 last year and 10 percent made more than $200,000.

Eighty-eight percent of workers in the fire and police departments earned $150,000 to $400,000 last year, 58 percent made $150,000 to $199,000 last year and 30 percent received $200,000 to $400,000.

These numbers are well above the average salaries for Alameda residents who do not work for the city. In 2010, Alameda male residents made an average of $66,000, while female residents averaged $55,000 that year, according to the 2010 US Census.

The release of the salary information comes at a time when the city is trying to pass Measure C — a half-percent sales tax increase — that, among other things, will raise money for a new emergency operation center for the police and fire departments, purchase new police vehicles and create other fire and police facilities.

An anti-Measure C group created www.AlamedaNoOnC.com and posted the 2011 salary data on their site. They indicated that the city of Alameda added $4.8 million in increased city-worker pay, while currently in a $4.4 million deficit.

Contact Ekene Ikeme at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .



+2 #5 earnestp 2012-05-31 07:27
allenby - if measure c passes, the city will secure a bond against the tax receipts, which means that they will receive money today for indentured payments in the future. Do you know who will issue those bonds? A wall street investment bank is the answer, who epitomize the tax dodgers you mention. In other words, Wall Street will be providing money to our local public servants if the measure passes. In that sense, wall street and our public workers are related, so Marvin's ire may not be so out of place.
0 #4 earnestp 2012-05-31 07:20
alienboy - you should be aware that part of measure c involves taking out a bond on future tax receipts. Bonds, which the city workers apparently want, are issued by investment banks, which epitomize the tax dodging zillionaires you mention. The reality is that investment banks and and the public sector have a rather tight relationship, so ire at public employees may not be too far off point.
0 #3 Mike 2012-05-30 02:40
Well, allenby, the people higher up the $$ scale do not work
for the city of Alameda. We need to act locally, dear.
The financial sector really has nothing to do with the fact
that our city public servants are overpaid. Time for some
common sense. scale-backs in order to not go bankrupt like
some other cities already have.
+2 #2 Marvin Hamon 2012-05-25 15:38
77% of City of Alameda employees were paid more than $77,000 last year, 44% more than $100,000, and 10% over $200,000. One was paid over $400,000. The city of Alameda added $4.8 million in increased city-worker pay in 2011. The budget deficit is $4.4 million. The city can't seem to find any money to maintain basic infrastructure.

Now the city comes to us, hat in hand, saying they need more tax money to keep this unsustainable system going. Then as an inducement to get people to approve the tax they make vague promises about a new pool and an athletic field. If I am in debt and can't find the money to maintain my house I'm not going to go get a loan to put a pool in my backyard.

I say vote no on "C" and yes on the city of Alameda cleaning up this fiscal nightmare and getting our city budget back in order.
0 #1 allenby 2012-05-25 04:50
Yeah, it's those over paid public employees that are at the root of our various financial woes not, for example, the tax dodging zillionaire flim-flam folks that have come to dominate our financial sector. But since the latter are so far beyond our ability to reign in we pick on much smaller fry producing negligible savings.

It appears you are appealing to class envy on a really petty scale. Aim your ire much further up the socioeconomic ladder and I'll be with you.

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