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As the Legislative session in New Mexico draws close to an end, those at the capitol continue to discuss the issue of compensation rates among public employees.
The push is on for pay raises and is justified by the fact that the last across-the-board pay raises for public employees was in 2008.
Surely, it can be hard for any worker to deal with stagnant wages, but before leaping to conclusions and jumping on the wage hike bandwagon, it is worth taking a closer look and saying “relative to what?”
Wages across the economy have stagnated since 2008 and New Mexico in particular has lost jobs in recent months.
Given New Mexico’s dismal economic performance, it is important to approach the issue of government employee pay hikes with scrutiny.
The Rio Grande Foundation has undertaken a careful examination of compensation rates among those in the public and private spheres.
Our analysis which uses a statistical tool called “regression” found that public employees in fact make more on average than those in the private sector.
In fact, on average those in the public sphere make 8.6 more in compensation than those in private industry.
The key factor in this disparity between both groups is simply benefits.
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