Prison Nurses Lead State Wage Increases
Registered nurses who work for California's state prisons have experienced one of the largest salary raises among state workers since 2000, according to an analysis of state payroll data, the Sacramento Bee reports.
As of January, the nurses' average base salary was $88,800, compared with $49,920 more than six years ago, according to the Bee analysis.
The salaries for the 1,448 registered nurses working in prisons are 30% more than the other 1,464 state registered nurses.
Union and personnel officials say the raises for prison workers are linked to court cases, the resolution of which included pay raises for health care providers (Hill, Sacramento Bee, 2/25).
Robert Sillen, the federal court-appointed receiver in charge of reforming the state's prison health care system, has reduced a gubernatorial appointee's duties by half and his salary by 37%, the Sacramento Bee reports. The action was taken following a contract dispute.
Dr. Peter Farber-Szekrenyi, appointed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) in 2005 to head the Division of Correctional Health Care Services, has been removed from duties concerning medical care delivery in the prisons as covered by a federal class-action case.
Farber-Szekrenyi will remain in charge of mental health and dental care in the prisons. Sillen reassigned the medical care duties to an official within his office.
Farber-Szekrenyi said the Office of the Inspector General, which oversees the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, has launched an investigation into the matter (Furillo, Sacramento Bee, 2/24).