Westfield tops region in average village pay

OBSERVER Staff Report

Two Chautauqua County villages rank near the top of their respective regions when it comes to employee pay.

According to the latest report from the Empire Center for Public Policy Inc., which was released earlier this week, both the villages of Westfield and Fredonia are tops in Western New York in terms of pay for employees and village Fire Departments. In Westfield, there are 37 employees who average $43,414 in annual salaries. Second on the list was Alden with 23 employees averaging $42,038. Average village salaries statewide were $40,162, according to the Empire Center report.

“Local government is a labor-intensive business, and employee compensation is the single biggest element of most municipal budgets,” the Empire Center noted in its report.

Fredonia led the list in terms of fire department pay. Though the statewide average was $65,737, there were only three villages in the Western New York region with departments. Fredonia, with 13 firefighters, had a pay average of $48,736, more than double that of second place Kenmore at $20,277.

Salaries, however, are only a piece of the total employee compensation. “The figures used to compute the averages include regular pay, overtime and pay for unused sick and vacation time,” the Empire Center report noted. “However, the figures do not include employer pension contributions, health insurance and other fringe benefits — elements of total compensation that can add 35 percent or more to personnel costs.”

Other area municipalities with number of employees and average pay were as follows:

¯ Arkwright — six, $29,026.

¯ Brocton — 15, $36,878

¯ Cassadaga — six, $16,988.

¯ Chautauqua County — 1,287, $42,024.

¯ Collins — 23, $17,653

¯ Dayton — 14, $12,203.

¯ Dunkirk, city — 103, $38,447

¯ Dunkirk, town — 26, $26,785.

¯ Evans — 95, $30,456.

¯ Fredonia — 45, $34,745.

¯ Gowanda — 28, $25,195.

¯ Hanover — 25, $39,335.

¯ Perrysburg — 13, $15,399.

¯ Persia — seven, $16,369.

¯ Pomfret — 24, $24,521.

¯ Portland — 16, $30,030.

¯ Ripley — 16, $28,855.

¯ Sheridan — 18, $18,359

¯ Silver Creek — 18, $28,756

¯ Stockton — 11, $28,263.

¯ Villenova — 8, $20,923.

¯ Westfield, town — 15, $30,114.

COMMENTS