Average Pay Rose at MTA in 2009, Data Show

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Contact: Lise Bang-Jensen

(518) 434-3100

A searchable database of the complete Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) payroll for 2009 – including names, titles, base pay rates and total pay received by 74,708 individuals – shows an increase of 2.4 percent in the average total pay of MTA employees last year. The updated payroll file is now available at www.SeeThroughNY.net, the government transparency website sponsored by the Empire Center for Public Policy.

(Go directly to www.SeeThroughNY.net)

For the second consecutive year, more than 10 percent of the MTA’s workforce – 8,074 individuals – took home $100,000 or more in total pay, including overtime and other extra pay. The MTA’s six-figure club included:

  • Six employees who earned more than $250,000;
  • 44 employees who earned between $200,000 and $250,000;
  • 511 employees who earned between $150,000 and $200,000; and
  • 7,513 individuals who earned between $100,000 and $150,000.

Eleven of the 561 employees who earned more than $150,000 in 2009 were Long Island Railroad car repairmen who earned an average of $167,342 – which was $102,477 over their annual base pay rate of $64,865. Other popular titles in the $150,000-and-over category included:

  • 65 Long Island Railroad and Metro-North Railroad conductors who averaged $86,837 over their base salaries which averaged $75,970;
  • 53 Bridge & Tunnel Sergeants and Lieutenants who averaged $94,962 over the average base pay of $82,594;
  • 34 Long Island and Metro-North Railroad engineers who averaged $89,109 over their $77,953;
  • 28 MTA police officers; and
  • 23 Long Island Railroad gang foremen averaging $81,718 over their base pay rate $82,249.

Most of the MTA’s unionized employees received a 4 percent base pay increase last year. Smaller average total pay increases in some units reflect, in part, the inclusion of non-unionized management employees, whose pay was frozen.

SeeThroughNY allows the public to examine government expenditures on the Internet. It includes the wages of most New York State government, public authorities, cities, counties, villages, towns and school districts. Also posted are teacher and administrator pensions, teacher and school superintendent employment contracts, state legislators’ office expenditures, pork barrel projects, and a benchmarking feature for comparing local government and school district spending. The site was launched July 31, 2008.

The Albany-based Empire Center is a non-partisan, independent think tank.

(Click here for table showing both total and change in employees and payroll by MTA subagency between 2008 and 2009, and click here for table showing the 100 highest earning MTA employees in 2009.)