Watchdog Report: Entry-Level City Firefighter Made $266,714 Last Year

Carl DeMaio Undesignated 7 Comments


As promised, my new talk show will feature investigative reports to expose the problems with runaway government. First up: Outrageous salaries for government workers – starting with our very own City Hall.

Release is below, but listen to the podcast online at or click here:

San Diego, CA – The City of San Diego taxpayers are on the hook to pay some outrageous salaries to city employees, according to an investigative report being released today during the DeMaio-Sullivan Report on News Radio 600 KOGO. The most surprising revelation: an entry-level firefighter took home an astonishing $266,714 in 2014! What else? A standard-classification police officer and lifeguard raked in over $164,000 each.

“These payouts demonstrate the City of San Diego continues to have a problem with outrageous salaries, driven by out-of-control overtime and overly-generous bonus payments,” noted Carl DeMaio. “City politicians claim they have solved the financial problems of the city, but the fact is they have much more work to do before taxpayers trust they are being really protected,” concluded DeMaio.

Among some of the other stunning payouts revealed in the report:

Growth in City Employee “$100,000 Club:” 1723 city workers took home $100,000 or more in 2014 – which equates to roughly 1-out-of-5 full-time city employees. The payouts do not include the cost of employee benefits – a figure that would push total cost-per-employee much higher than what is reflected in the salary report. DeMaio said the inclusion of employee benefits would result in 1-out-of-3 full-time employees costing taxpayers $100,000 or more annually.

Top 10 Payouts: The entry-level firefighter paid $266,714 came in as the second-highest paid city employee in 2014, just behind the city’s chief operating officer who took home $280,708. Six-of-the-ten top city employees work in the fire department.

1. Chief Operating Officer: $280,708
2. Firefighter II: $266,714
3. Chief Financial Officer: $244,571
4. Asst. Chief Op Officer: $230,328
5. Fire Captain: $228,086
6. Fire Engineer: $224,327
7. Ind. Budget Analyst: $220,594
8. Fire Captain: $218,000
9. Fire Battalion Chief: $213,966
10. Fire Captain: $213,360

DeMaio and Bob “Sully” Sullivan will also discuss findings of recent city audits that raise concerns about unsubstantiated bonuses and mismanaged overtime payments occurring within the city – two issues that drive many of the outrageous payouts revealed in the report.


Comments 7

  1. Doesn’t this just show that some people prefer to spend all their waking hours at work instead of having real lives? Whatever, the jobs must be done, whether or not one worker gets $100 and another gets $20. And, they are going to pay taxes on their bounty. Those people piling up the overtime cannot be pensioned on those amounts if they are covered by PEPRA 2013. CalPERS does not pension overtime. Carl D. is working with Chuck Reed on an inititiative that targets CalPERS. Go figure–some politicians willl sink to any low to stay relevant.

  2. A few questions, Was this his total compensation including all the benefits lumped together? Or was this his actual take home in pay? I know you guys like the shock value of the amount. Also, can you include the amount of hours this guy had to put in to make what he did. Every Fire Dept has one of those energetic guys (usually young with no kids) that is willing to have no life and work for the FFs who have families that want the holidays off, or cannot work the FORCED days, or do not want to work the extra hours. Btw, San Diego is a big fire dept, how many FFs made the same amount as this workaholic?

  3. “I know you guys…”

    Just the guys or the gals too?

    “Every Fire Dept has one of those energetic guys…”

    Too many guys hanging around here.

  4. LOL. Just yankin’ chains on the guys thing. Nowadays to the younger crowd, we’re all guys, regardless.

  5. Average California firefighter is paid 60% more than paid firefighters in other 49 states. CA cops paid 56% more.

    But the CA 2011 median household income (including gov’t workers) is only 13.4% above nat’l avg. There’s no justification for paying these folks 60% above what cops and ff’s get in the other states (not even counting the terribly underfunded, exorbitant CA pensions).

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