Tuesday, July 12, 2011
ADDA Head Clarifies Comparison of Prosecutors’ Salaries
By a MetNews Staff Writer
The president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys has clarified his assertion, made in a letter to the editor published by the METNEWS June 15, that the county’s prosecutors make far less than city attorneys is based on a comparison to prosecutors in the City of Long Beach.
ADDA head Hyatt Seligman explained his statement that “young deputies today start out tens of thousands less per year than City Attorneys,” refers to the compensation of Long Beach deputy city prosecutors. Long Beach has a somewhat unique system, in that misdemeanors there are prosecuted by an independently elected city prosecutor.
“Where I work, Long Beach city prosecutors make tens of thousands more than starting deputies,” he said, citing a figure of $91,333 per year contained in an article from the Long Beach Business Journal. “This is what I was thinking of when I talked about starting City Attorneys making tens of thousands more,” Seligman related.
A spokesperson for the district attorney’s office has said that the starting salary for county prosecutors is $5,152.36 per month, but they also are given a monthly County Benefit Allowance, which represents either 14.5 percent of their monthly salary or $1,078, whichever is greater. A newly hired deputy district attorney would therefore receive $74,764.32 his or her first year of employment.
Los Angeles deputy city attorneys do make more than county prosecutors, and receive $2,366 more than a first-year deputy district attorney when starting out, according to numbers posted on the Los Angeles city controller’s website. The controller identifies the lowest paid deputy city attorney as receiving $77,130.72 annually after taking into account any reduced pay due to voluntary waivers or furloughs, and increased pay for overtime work, car allowances, cash-in-lieu for health benefits.
Seligman emphasized, however, his “point is obvious” regarding the discrepancy in pay, contending it is unfair that “[i]n Los Angeles County, City Attorneys, who only prosecute misdemeanors in criminal cases, are paid substantially higher than the Deputy District Attorneys who prosecute all of the tens of thousands of major felony cases in court from murder to kidnapping to rape and robbery.”
Copyright 2011, Metropolitan News Company