Public Sector Compensation in Local Governments: An Analysis

Thom Reilly, Alice Bolin, Shaun Schoener

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine local government compensation practices across the United States and to explore possible correlations of these practices to service delivery. One hundred twenty of the largest cities and counties responded to a mail survey, for a response rate of 40%. The data suggest a large percentage (86%) of local governments faced financial difficulties in the form of a budget shortfall since 2000. In response to these shortfalls, local governments were more likely to reduce their workforce, reduce or eliminate services, and/or raise taxes or user fees rather than scale back wages and benefits. Because of this reaction, more than one half of the respondents experienced a decrease in full-time equivalent employment per 1,000 residents. Collective bargaining status, geographical region, and type of government (county or city) were found to be significant factors in determining compensation practices. Implications for practice and policy are advanced.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-58
Number of pages20
JournalReview of Public Personnel Administration
Volume27
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2007

Keywords

  • public sector compensation
  • service delivery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Administration
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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