Last week, 27,388 state employees received their October bonuses totaling more than $13.65 million. That’s about $4 million less than the state paid in April because, for the first time in decades, political appointees didn’t receive biannual bonuses.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean political appointees who have worked for the state for more than 10 years will see a drop in their annual paychecks or that the state will reap any significant savings in 2014 from not handing out the bonuses.
Non-union employees and political appointees will have the amount of the annual longevity bonus included in their base pay, so the savings for the state will be minimal in the short term. But in the long term, as those employees retire the state will see some savings since it is no longer be providing longevity bonuses to new hires.
In 2014, there are no savings associated with the elimination of the longevity bonus, but the bonuses will not be included as part of the retirement package of any employee who retires between April 1 and June 30, 2013, according to the Office of Fiscal Analysis.
The 27,388 employees who received bonuses on Friday most belong to unions. There are some employees in the criminal justice division who received bonuses but don’t belong to unions. Most of the bonuses for the union members were negotiated as part of the 2011 State Employees Bargaining Agent Coalition concession package.
Last week was also the first time the union employees saw an increase in their bonuses, which were frozen at 2011 levels for the past two years. Longevity pay increases every five years that employees stay on the job past their 10 year qualifying anniversary. No new employees qualify for longevity bonuses. The biannual bonuses for the non-union political appointees were eliminated in last December’s deficit mitigation package.
The union employees who received the largest bonuses on Friday were Matthew Crockett and Andrew Slitt. The two assistant state’s attorneys brought home an additional $6,007.50. Carol Williams of Eastern Connecticut State University, Kimberly Martohue of Central Connecticut State University, Edward Farrington of Western Connecticut State University, and Salvatore Cintorino of Central Central Connecticut State University each brought home an additional $4,168.32.
Aaron Washington of Southern Connecticut State University received a check for $4,125.82. He was followed by William Aust, director of telecommunications at the Connecticut State University System, whose longevity check amounted to $4,122.99, and Jonathan Derman, a database administrator with the state university system, brought home an additional $4,117.57.
The average bonus check was about $498.