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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Pay grades

Boy, talk about a nice bump in pay:

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) - Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels will receive a big pay raise when he leaves office in January and takes over as president of Purdue University , possibly earning more than five times as much salary.

A memorandum of understanding between Daniels and the university calls for a salary comparable to those earned by university presidents at peer institutions, as well as performance bonuses. Outgoing Purdue President France Cordova earns $465,000. Indiana University President Michael McRobbie earns $533,120, which IU spokesman Mark Land says put him roughly in the middle for pay among university presidents in the Big Ten.

[. . .]

According to the state auditor's office, Daniels' annual salary is $95,000. With other compensation, he was paid nearly $108,000 last year.

It's hard to read that and not think either, A) The governor is underpaid or, B) University presidents are overpaid. A little bit of both, probably, although a stronger case can probably be made for A. The mayor of Fort Wayne's yearly salary is just shy of $125,000, for goodness sake -- shouldn't the governor get more than the mayor of the state's second-largest city? And one of a university president's chief duties is to keep big bucks rolling in; their salaries may seem inflated, but at least they have to perform for it.

In the private sector, it's harder to get angry over anybody's salary, or at least it should be. People are worth whatever their employers are willing to pay them, and it's really not any concern of ours. But people in the public sector are paid with our money, and they get to set their own salaries without any input from us. Our money, our right to be envious.


Andrew J.
Thu, 06/28/2012 - 8:58am

$95,000 a year to be governor of a Midwestern state. Embarassing. I'm sure there's Hoosier taxpayers who'll find the position overpaid.


tim zank
Thu, 06/28/2012 - 7:11pm

Andrew, the Governor of Florida only makes $25k more than Indiana's at $130k... and the Mayor of Orlando (pop 238k) makes  $156,205.66...  It would appear Indiana isn't so different than your beloved Florida in salary structure wouldn't it?

Andrew J.
Thu, 06/28/2012 - 9:12pm

Yeah. I would consider getting paid 25-30 % more a substantial difference between florida and indiana.

tim zank
Fri, 06/29/2012 - 8:29am

Florida has a population of 19 million, Indiana is 6.5 million....I'd say your Governor is grossly underpaid...must be a bunch of real tightwad hicks down there....

Andrew J.
Fri, 06/29/2012 - 9:14am

Actually, our GOP governor is worth about a $220 million; he is taking a penny in yearly pay.