The State Worker

CHP officers’ pay up 11 percent; number of officers declines

A California Highway Patrol officer walks toward John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, Calif.
A California Highway Patrol officer walks toward John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, Calif. AP

Payroll costs for California Highway Patrol officers grew an average 11 percent per employee last year, new state data show, fueled by a mandated raise, more overtime and the end of furloughs in 2013.

Meanwhile, the number of officers was down nearly 2 percent from the previous year.

Officers’ total pay averaged $118,302 in 2014, an increase of $13,016 per employee. The figure includes all forms of wages, such as hourly pay and fitness pay, issued through the California State Controller’s Office. Overtime pay per officer also rose 11 percent to an average $15,241.

By law, pay for members of the California Association of Highway Patrolmen is based each year on the average total compensation of corresponding ranks in the Los Angeles Police Department, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office, the San Diego Police Department, the Oakland Police Department and the San Francisco Police Department.

Last year, CHP officers’ wages lagged the average by 6.9 percent. Officers netted a 4.9 percent raise with the other 2 percent paying higher pension contributions mandated by state law.

The end of one-day-per-month furloughs in mid-2013 comparatively lifted 2014 annual pay for CHP officers – and all state workers – by a little more than 2 percent.

State figures also indicate the department paid 117 fewer officers last year, an attrition rate of 1.8 percent. From 2012 through 2014, the number of rank-and-file patrol officers has declined 2.75 percent.

This is the second in a series of State Worker blog posts on California state-employee pay by bargaining unit. Click here to search state-government wage data on sacbee.com.

Call Jon Ortiz, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 321-1043.

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