How much do they pay the gays in Texas?

Posted on 20 May 2010 at 2:13pm
Houston Mayor Annise Parker, shown being sworn in January, is only the second-highest-paid openly LGBT government employee in Texas.
Houston Mayor Annise Parker, shown at her inauguration in January, is the second-highest-paid openly LGBT government employee in Texas.

Earlier today I stumbled upon The Texas Tribune’s handy-dandy database of Government Employee Salaries, which claims to contain salary information for 480,000 workers at 62 agencies, schools, cities, counties and transit operations. Naturally my first thought was to type in some openly LGBT government employees (although unfortunately there is no search parameter for “gay”). After the jump, a sampling of what 15 out public employees in Texas make.

1. Theresa O’Donnell, director of development services, city of Dallas: $161,182

2. Annise Parker, Houston mayor (based on predecessor Bill White’s salary): $160,057

3. Rosemary Lehmberg, district attorney, Travis County: $158,272

4. Jim Foster, Dallas county judge: $153,853

5. Lupe Valdez, Dallas County sheriff: $140,110

6. Barbara Rosenberg, assistant city attorney, Dallas: $139,203

7. Steve Kirkland, district judge, Houston: $125,000

8. Gary Fitzsimmons, Dallas County district clerk: $122,712

9. Frank Librio, director of public information, city of Dallas: $114,747

10. Susan Steeg, justice of the peace, Travis County: $105,000

11. Chris Heinbaugh, chief of staff for Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert: $102,290

12. Sara Straten, LGBT liaison officer, Fort Worth Police Department: $66,768

13. Randi Shade, Austin city councilwoman: $61,256

14. Laura Martin, LGBT liaison officer, Dallas Police Department: $58,637

15. Sue Lovell, Houston city councilwoman: $55,985

The Tribune cautions that the data includes only a snapshot of each worker’s annual base salary, and not overtime, incentive pay or other compensation. Also, the database may not be fully up to date in all cases. For example, Annise Parker is still listed as the Houston controller, so I’ve based her salary as mayor on that of her predecessor, Bill White. And not all public employees in Texas are included.

Finally, while O’Donnell tops my list, there is at least one gay public employee in Texas who makes more, but he isn’t out. And no, I’m not talking about Gov. Rick Perry.

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