By Natalie O'Neill
Life’s a beach for these California lifeguards.
The highest-paid Los Angeles lifeguards earn up to $392,000 annually — and dozens of others rake in more than $200,000 a year, according to an investigation by Forbes.
Seven LA County lifeguards earned more than $300,000 in taxpayer dough by tapping into overtime pay in 2019, the latest year available, Forbes found.
Meanwhile, 82 of the sun-soaked public employees made more than $200,000 during the same year, according to the outlet, which cited data obtained by its own auditors.
LA’s best-paid lifeguard was “acting chief lifeguard” Fernando Boiteux, who made $391,971 with salary ($205,619), perks ($60,452) and benefits ($125,900) in 2019, according to the report.
In second place was Captain Daniel Douglas, who earned a total of $368,668 with base pay, overtime, benefits and other factors.
By contrast, New York’s two highest-earning cops in 2018 were paid $323,562 and $317,795, respectively, with a combined $641,000 in pay and benefits.
Overall, 31 lifeguards in Los Angeles made between $50,000 and $131,493 in overtime over the course of the year.
The investigation also found that high earnings weren’t necessarily linked to the most heroic employees. Many of the lifeguards who won the Medal of Valor for exhibiting bravery and saving lives were not among the county’s highest-paid.
For example, Edward “Nick” Macko — an ocean lifeguard specialist who won the 2020 Medal of Valor — earned $134,144 in compensation, a fraction of some of his peers.
In total, California public employees cost taxpayers $45 billion a year, according to the report.