Why is it that some public sector employees expect to be given large increases merely because someone with a similar job description in another location is paid more? This seems to hold at all levels -- federal, state and local. It is particularly outrageous when this argument is being made by a highly compensated person in a small town. The assumption here is that an individual making $80,000 a year in a small town is highly compensated.
During a period in which many people in the private sector are experiencing reductions in income and many are out of work, expecting an increase of almost 19 percent for someone making $80,000 just doesn't make sense. And let's not forget the additional raises to bring the compensation to over $100,000. How many taxpayers in Townsend have had a 19 percent raise recently? How many have experienced layoffs and/or reductions in pay?
Here's a question, if surrounding towns determine that the compensation for this person's peers is to be reduced, would he be arguing for a decrease? Comments like "if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys" may be cute, but don't really add to the discussion. One could argue that it insults other town employees that have gone many years without an increase. What about the town employees making significantly less that get increases of just a few percent?
In the current economy, in order to maintain an income stream, many highly skilled and competent people are accepting positions at much lower salaries than they have had in the past.