Gov Careers

By Phil Piemonte

Blog archive

Overpaid feds found!

Flash! Most of the highest-paid federal employees are doctors and lawyers!

(If you are thinking "duh," you are probably not alone.)

But that's the news from USA Today, which has generated a lot of the stories that have provided fodder for purveyors of “overpaid fed” hysteria.

According to the publication, docs at the Veterans Health Administration and the National Institutes of Health, together with Securities and Exchange Commission attorneys, “represent the most numerous groups among at least 17,828 federal employees whose annualized salaries totaled $180,000 or more in September 2010.”

Wait a minute. We’re talking about not quite 18,000 employees — a large number of them doctors or lawyers — out of 2 million or so federal workers?

Isn’t that almost statistically insignificant or something?

The publication looked at Office of Personnel Management stats and found that, as of September 2010, about two-thirds of that group — 12,708 of them — were VHA doctors. And there were lots of other docs at agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration and the Indian Health Service. Another 598 of the highest-paid group were SEC attorneys.

If you are saying that these are, after all, doctors, lawyers and top scientists and that’s how much they make and more, you would be right. More in private practice, from a quick look at docs’ wages and earnings, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Of course, that won’t stop critics from saying that the federal workforce is overpaid as a whole.

But you already knew that.

Posted by Phil Piemonte on May 04, 2011 at 12:13 PM


Featured

  • Cybersecurity

    DHS floats 'collective defense' model for cybersecurity

    Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen wants her department to have a more direct role in defending the private sector and critical infrastructure entities from cyberthreats.

  • Defense
    Defense Secretary James Mattis testifies at an April 12 hearing of the House Armed Services Committee.

    Mattis: Cloud deal not tailored for Amazon

    On Capitol Hill, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis sought to quell "rumors" that the Pentagon's planned single-award cloud acquisition was designed with Amazon Web Services in mind.

  • Census
    shutterstock image

    2020 Census to include citizenship question

    The Department of Commerce is breaking with recent practice and restoring a question about respondent citizenship last used in 1950, despite being urged not to by former Census directors and outside experts.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.