The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

June 27, 2013
What California state workers earn: Highway Patrol officers

RB_Cellphone_0001.JPGBy Amy Gebert and Jon Ortiz

In a move underscoring its emphasis on long-term security, the California Association of Highway Patrolmen accepted furloughs last year in exchange for a five-year extension of the contract that would have expired next month.

Although the officers' union contract isn't up for negotiation until 2018, we thought it only fair to run the numbers on what they earn:

Number of employees in 2012: 6,733
2012 average pay: $86,637
2012 median pay: $94,119

Number of employees in 2011: 6,500
2011 average pay: $90,683
2011 median pay: $94,045

2012 Largest job class: Officer, California Highway Patrol (6,344)
Highest paid job class (2012 average): Officer, CHP ($91,384)
Lowest paid job class (2012 average): Cadet, CHP ($11,309)

This chart shows the average and median pay for Bargaining Unit 5 in 2011 and 2012.

With talks and ratification votes for new state employee contracts on the agenda over the next few weeks, The State Worker is looking at what unionized workers earned over the last two years by bargaining unit.

The numbers feeding the series come from the State Controller's payroll database. The figures include only regular pay issued to full-time employees represented by the 21 bargaining units that negotiate contracts with the state. The number of employees includes only full-time workers who were paid during the calendar year. University of California and California State University employee earnings are not included in these figures. The data covers calendar 2011 and 2012.

PHOTO: CHP officer Jeanie Hoatson patrols the Rancho Cordova area in Sacramento on Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2010. The Sacramento Bee/Randall Benton

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About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at


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