Before Christmas we posted an article on Park City teacher salaries. We decided not to post teacher names but still received substantial pushback on the data’s accuracy. Most commenters said that they always found the numbers inflated. Some said that what we published did not match what they received. So, we decided to reach out to the State of Utah for an explanation.
Their response was:
It appears that:
- Data comes from the school district (or whatever government entity you work for). So, if you have a beef, contact them.
- The numbers include dollars you may not see on your paycheck. For instance, you may see a 7.65% FICA tax on your paycheck but your employer is also paying 7.65% (and you may not see that). Likewise, you may see a healthcare expense of $200 but your employer may be paying $800 for you and your family (and you may not see that either).
We do see the employee’s point of view who may say, “but some of that isn’t really a benefit, so it’s unfair to present that as compensation. It paints an inaccurate picture.” There is some truth in that.
That said, from a taxpayer standpoint, many of us want to know what an employee is costing the people. That would include any expense related to an employee’s job, whether the employee sees it in the form of cash or not.
Again, perhaps every number submitted, from every organization, is over-inflated. However, its more likely that there is a substantial amount of cost that the average employee just doesn’t see.