This release includes corrections to some erroneous summaries of data in our original release as posted on May 27.

Payroll for Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) in calendar year 2019 increased by more than $150 million, according to data released today on SeeThroughNY.net, the Empire Center’s transparency website.

Payroll at Port Authority totaled more than $997 million last year, an 18 percent increase from $845 million in payroll in 2018. This includes an increase of more than $30 million in overtime and an almost $18 million increase in other extra pay such as shift differentials and holiday pay. The average pay among all Port Authority employees was $114,391 in 2019. The median pay was $107,587.

The highest paid group of employees, the Port Authority Police Department, collected average total pay of $144,929 in 2019. Of the 2,118 Port Authority police department employees, 124 were paid at least $100,000 in overtime.

Of the 1,970 Port Authority police officers in 2019, defined as members of the Police Benevolent Association, 69 were paid at least $100,000 in overtime, increasing the total overtime payments for the Port Authority police to $86 million, an increase of $16 million from 2018. Their average pay was $149,097.

In total, more than 55 percent of the 8,721 Port Authority employees in 2019 were paid six-figures, including 74 percent of the Port Authority Police Department. The number of employees who were paid more than $200,000 in 2019 more than doubled from 243 to 688. Employees paid more than $300,000 increased from four to 53 in 2019.

The Authority is also paying nearly $214 million in retroactive wages. The largest retro payment was $164,043 paid to a retiree who is now deceased.

The three highest paid employees, including overtime and other extra pay, were:

  • Regina Womack, police sergeant, with a total pay of $423,467, including $259,717 in overtime on top of her annual rate of $136,000, with $105,800 more slated to come in retro-payments;
  • Bernard Buckner, police sergeant, with total pay of $376,040, including $204,968 in overtime, $39,241 in extra pay and $131,831 in base pay, and is set to receive $106,603 in retro-payments; and
  • Nicholas Yum, police lieutenant, with total pay of $374,588, including $168,022 in overtime, $57,214 in extra pay and $149,352 in base pay, while also being slated to earn $99,075 in retro-payments.

The Empire Center, based in Albany, is an independent, not-for-profit, non-partisan think tank dedicated to promoting policies that can make New York a better place to live, work and raise a family.

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The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.

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