La. average public employee earnings rank No. 32 in US, report says

A new Census Bureau report shows a total of 289,360 Louisianans were working for the state or local governments in 2013, earning an average of $3,231 a month. Public employees in the District of Columbia and 31 states earned more on average than their peers in Louisiana, according to the report, which was compiled using March 2013 data.

The Louisiana average also trailed the U.S. average of $3,743 last year, the report says.

“For all full-time and part-time employees of both state and local governments, the District of Columbia, New York, and New Jersey earned the highest salaries in the nation by state area, with average monthly earnings of $6,069; $4,888; and $4,849, respectively,” the report says. “The lowest average salaries by state area were South Dakota, North Dakota, and Idaho, with average monthly earnings of $2,540; $2,740; and $2,763, respectively.”

As The Washington Post notes in its coverage of the report, the earnings data from the report do not include federal employee earnings by state, but it does include the federal government in its overall accounting of payroll for March. Federal, state and local government employees raked in $87.9 billion in March 2013. The federal payroll—the smallest of the three—declined 2.2% from the year before, while the state and local government payrolls swelled by 1.6% and 0.2%, respectively.

Overall, employment among all three levels of government dropped about 0.9% to 21.8 million employees in March 2013 from the year before. Local governments accounted for about 63% of all government employment, while state governments accounted for 24%. The federal government accounted for just over 12% of government employment. (The numbers add up to 99% because each was rounded–down in each case–to the nearest whole number.)

In Louisiana, local governments accounted for 68.2% of all public employment, while 31.8% were employed at the state level. While full-time government employees in Louisiana earned an average of $3,754 per month in March last year, the report says, part-time employees earned an average of $929 per month, putting the average for all state employees at $3,231. See the full report.

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