Thursday, September 22, 2011

Long Island Teacher - Is this the best paying job ?

New study from Bureau of Labor Statistics finds LI teachers tops in salary list New York State and Northern New Jersey

Average annual wages for teachers Nassau-Suffolk

  • $85,780: Secondary
  • $83,700: Middle
  • $86,440: Elementary 
$85k for 188 days of work and 6hrs a day means

$85,780/(188*6) = $76/ hr

WOW! $76/hr with nice health benefits and pension! That's $150+k per year ... Nice

Well here is the same stale reason why they need high salaries, cost of living in Long Island is high. Is it even higher than New York City? where teachers are paid less. The same is the issue with Suffolk and Nassau Police salaries ! 

Long Island tops the list for average teacher salaries in New York State and Northern New Jersey, according to a new federal study.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics data released Tuesday looked at the average pay of secondary, middle and elementary schoolteachers in various metro areas around the state as of May 2010. Long Island had the highest salaries in all of those categories.

The average salary here for an elementary schoolteacher was the highest at $86,440. That contrasted with a statewide average of $67,940 and the nation's $54,330.

The five boroughs of New York City were lumped into a metro area that includes counties in Northern New Jersey and north of the city. That area's average pay for an elementary schoolteacher was $69,040.

Since at least 2008, teachers' salaries on Long Island have far outpaced the state average, and the gap has widened slightly for elementary teachers. In 2008 for example, the average $82,050 for an elementary schoolteacher here topped the state's average by $17,050. In 2010 the gap was $18,500. The gaps narrowed slightly for high school and middle school teachers.

School district salaries have long been a point of contention on Long Island because education is largely funded by property taxes. Some critics want to see lower salaries.

"They are way too high," said Fred Gorman, co-founder of Long Islanders for Educational Reform. "They don't want to take into account that they only work 188 days."

But Jeff Rozran, an English teacher at Syosset High School and president of the Teacher Association there, said, "Teachers' salaries are pretty much in line with the salaries in other regions when you look at other things like the cost of housing," he said.

A local economist echoed that view. "When you talk about teachers being paid too much, you need to compare it to what it costs to get by as a middle-class person on Long Island, which is well above what it costs in the southern United States or the Midwest," said economist Gregory DeFreitas, who heads Hofstra University's labor studies program.

Martin Cantor, an economist who heads the Long Island Center for Socio-Economic Policy, a think tank he founded, said the higher salaries also reflect Long Island's more experienced teachers."The fact is Long Island has more experienced teachers who have been working for a longer period of time," he said.

Both economists were surprised that the federal data focused on the average salary rather than the median, which is the midpoint between the higher and lower salaries. The average salary is easily skewed by the large number of baby boomers, who are older and more highly paid, they said.

Source: Newsday

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Long Island Property taxes most important issue, say LIers

No surprise here ! To stop this ridiculous rise in property taxes we have to educate our fellow LIers and contact your representative that they should demand Speaker Silver respond to the pleas of homeowners across the state and support a property tax cap in New York. It has already passed the senate but is being stalled in the Assembly by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.

Also this year we are seeing some enormous rise in property taxes in school districts such as
William Floyd 12.47% and Seaford 8.99%. Some school districts such as Middle country is resorting to blackmailing its residents. The deal for districts residents is either approved a 6.68% increase or the district is going to force 21.61% increase in tax levy.

Published by THOMAS MAIER at Newsday

By a wide margin, property taxes are the most important issue facing Long Islanders, according to a Newsday / News 12 Long Island / Siena Research Institute Poll. Property taxes were cited overall by 45 percent of respondents, more than twice the 21 percent who cited "availability of good jobs" as the second most pressing issue for Long Islanders. "Property taxes are really an issue here because it keeps the young people from staying on Long Island and it will prevent the older people from staying, too," Tafuri explained.

Property taxes also are a large part of why the 57 percent of those polled said Long Islanders are headed in the "wrong direction" rather than the "right track" in the poll. A similar margin said New York State was headed in the wrong direction as well.

Property taxes are a particularly raw issue in Nassau County, where 53 percent cited them as the biggest issue, compared to 36 percent in Suffolk. Islandwide, Republicans and people 55 years or older complained about property taxes the most. "The Democrats love to spend money and they have to get it from the taxpayers," said one poll respondent, a retired Republican who lives on Nassau County's South Shore.

School costs - the biggest part of property tax bills - were also on the minds of Long Islanders who cited "the quality of public schools" among their top concerns. "The first thing I would do is eliminate tenure for teachers in public schools to cut costs," said another poll respondent, a 50-year-old Garden City man who is a Republican and who did not want to give his name. Although he was happy that his two children attending local schools got a good education there, he said his family's property tax bill has been overwhelming.

Property taxes hit a chord with all respondents, regardless of age, race, gender, religion, location or party affiliation. In addition to identifying the most important issue, the poll underlined the intensity of Long Islanders' general feelings about property taxes, with 86 percent calling the issue "very important" and 11 percent as "somewhat important." Crime, schools, good jobs and health care also received strong reactions, with traffic congestion and the local environment getting milder reactions.