MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Many of Wisconsin's highest-paid state public workers are investment board employees.
A review of a Department of Administration database by Gannett Wisconsin Media shows the chief officer for the State of Wisconsin Investment Board is the highest-paid state employee with compensation expected to top $800,000 this year.
David Villa's base pay this year is $413,000, and he received a $421,000 bonus because the state fund exceeded earnings expectations. Previously Villa's bonuses, determined by the Board of Trustees based on the funds' performance, were $259,000 in 2012 and $226,000 in 2011.
The database shows 27 of the state's top 50 earners are investment board employees. The database does not include University of Wisconsin System employees.
The investment board oversees $94 billion in assets, most of which is from the Wisconsin Retirement System, the nation's ninth-largest public pension fund, board spokeswoman Vicki Hearing said.
The board handed out a total of $8 million in bonuses this year, compared to $4.3 million in 2012 and $3.5 million in 2011, Hearing said. The bonuses cause year-to-year pay to fluctuate widely for its employees. Four of the board's 10 highest-paid employees saw their gross pay drop by $80,000 or more from 2011 to 2012.
The rest of the 50 highest salaries in state government include 15 doctors, psychiatrists and their managers within the Department of Health Services and six doctors with the Department of Corrections.
Among elected officials, Gov. Scott Walker's gross pay for 2012 was $143,872, an increase of more than $5,000 from 2011 because he was not in office in the first pay period of last year.
Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen's 2012 pay of $139,612, an increase of about $300 from 2011. Tony Evers, state superintendent of public instruction, was paid $119,652 in 2012, unchanged from 2011.
Salaries for state senators and representatives were unchanged at $49,943.
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