By Rachel O'Brien, Deputy Policy Editor, OpenTheBooks
Government workers in Clark County and the cities of Las Vegas and Henderson earned more than $1 billion last year, including $182 million in overtime and other pay.
Clark County paid $631 million in payroll to more than 13,000 employees in 2022, $533 million of which was base pay. That’s compared to the 2021 payroll of $594 million - $37 million less than last year but that’s with 3,000 fewer employees. But it was higher in 2020 — $632 million for almost 15,000 employees, 1,500 more employees than last year.
The 13,355-person payroll in 2022 includes around 5,000 interns, part-time/summer employees, and people hired temporarily to work during elections, who made as little as $100 to a few thousand dollars. Around 8,000 people made $10,000 or more.
Overtime totaled $40.4 million, callback pay was $709,000, and other pay accounted for $56.5 million.
The average base pay was almost $40,000, with average total wages coming in at more than $47,000. But 2,076 people — about 16% of its workforce — took home $100,000 or more, while 161 people made $200,000 or more.
The average income in Clark County was $33,461 in 2021, according to the Census.
Overtime pay went to 5,290 people, averaging $7,647. More than half the $40 million of overtime pay went to firefighters, while family services employees took home almost $7 million in overtime.
Call back pay went to 315 people, which was $2,259 on average, and 8,660 people collected “other pay,” on average $6,533.
The highest paid employee was now-former County Manager Yolanda King, who collected $728,307 last year when she retired. Of that, $256,367 was base pay, with $471,940 in “other pay.”
Following her was then-Chief Public Defender Curtis Brown, who made $457,644 and also retired. His base salary was $121,435, with other pay of $336,209.
Rosemary Vassiliadis, director of aviation, took home $369,178 — $289,577, the highest base pay in the county, with $79,601 in other pay.
The approximately 4,280 employees of the City of Las Vegas were paid $272.5 million in gross wages in 2022, $218.4 million of which was base pay. Las Vegas’ payrolls for both 2020 and 2021 were $270 million, just $2.5 million less than last year and with 400 fewer employees both years.
Average base pay in 2022 was about $51,000, while average gross pay was more than $63,000 with all types of pay included. But more than 1,100 people — about 26% of its workforce — took home $100,000 or more, while 64 people made $200,000 or more.
The 4,280-person payroll includes interns and part-time/summer employees like lifeguards, who made as little as $100 to a few thousand dollars. About 3,100 people made $10,000 or more.
Overtime pay totaled $29.3 million and went to 2,151 people, averaging $13,649. Two-thirds —$20.4 million — were paid to firefighters.
Longevity pay totaled $6.9 million for 1,094 people, averaging $6,337.
Separation pay was $6.6 million for 314 people, averaging almost $21,000.
Buyback pay totaled $5.8 million for 1,178 people averaging $4,889, while 2,781 people collected $5.5 million in “other pay,” averaging $1,995.
The highest paid was then-Fire Battalion Chief Robert D. Pitts, who collected $366,579 in gross pay — $116,661 base pay, $159,974 in separation pay, $70,882 overtime, $11,666 in longevity pay, $4,550 in back pay and$ 2,844 in other pay.
City Manager Jorge Cervantes was the second-highest paid, with $317,885 total pay — $261,071 base pay, $34,563 buy back pay, $22,250 other pay.
The city spent $32 million on health insurance for 2,915 people, averaging almost $11,000 per employee. It spent $79.4 million on pension contributions for 2,915 employees, averaging more than $27,000 per employee. Those are small increases over 2020 and 2021, when the city paid $31 million for health insurance and $73 million for pensions.
The approximately 3,600 employees of the City of Henderson were paid $234 million in gross wages in 2022, $197 million of which was base pay. That’s compared to $221.3 million payroll in 2020 , and $209 million in 2019 with about the same employee numbers in 2022.
Average base pay in 2022 was more than $53,000, while average gross pay was more than $63,000 with all types of pay included. But 920 people — about 26% of its workforce — took home $100,000 or more, while 44 people made $200,000 or more.
The 3,600-person payroll includes interns and part-time/summer employees like lifeguards, who made as little as $100 to a few thousand dollars. About 2,600 people made $10,000 or more.
The $18.1 million in overtime pay went to 1,588 people, averaging $11,413. Three quarters went to firefighters —$7 million — and police — $6.4 million.
“Other pay” totaled $13 million for 1,827 people, averaging $7,121.
The highest paid was City Manager Richard Derrick, who took home $333,950 — $277,170 in base pay and $56,780 in other pay.
Corrections Sergeant Robert D. Thomas was the second-highest paid with $314,170, with more in overtime — $137,990 — than base pay, $123,914, with another $52,265 in other pay.