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Nearly 9,000 state workers earned at least $100,000

About 8,850 state employees earned more than $100,000 last year, a significant jump from 2012, when nearly 7,700 state workers cracked that mark, according to a Globe analysis of public payroll records.

The University of Massachusetts, as in past years, dominated the list of highest paid employees, with 68 of 69 top spots held by UMass doctors, administrators, and coaches.

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The university system had 2,785 workers earning in excess of $100,000, more than any other state entity. State Police were second on that list, with 1,629 troopers earning more than $100,000 last year, followed by the Trial Court, with 654, the Department of Public Health, with 378, and the Department of Transportation, with 337.

The number of state employees earning six figures has been steadily increasing in recent years, climbing from 6,900 in 2011.

Some of the highest-paid employees are from the UMass Medical School, which says that only a small portion of its funding comes from taxpayers.

Still, David G. Tuerck , a Suffolk University economist, said it seems inappropriate for the state to pay more than $100,000 to an increasing number of employees when the state unemployment rate rose from 6.7 percent in December 2012 to 7 percent in December 2013, and “the average income earner hasn’t done any better over the last several years.”

Meghan Kelly, a spokeswoman for Governor Deval Patrick’s budget office, said less than 7 percent of the state’s approximately 91,000 employees earn more than $100,000. Of the 45,000 employees in the executive branch, over which Patrick has direct control, 5 percent earn a six-figure salary, she said.

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“We take great care that our employee salaries are both fiscally responsible and fair to the employees of the Commonwealth that dedicate themselves to public service,” Kelly said.

Ann Scales, a UMass spokeswoman, also defended salaries at the university.

“Our salaries are established in relation to what people at comparable institutions are paid for doing comparable jobs,” she said. “It’s necessary that the salaries be competitive to attract and retain top faculty and staff.”

The highest-paid employee in 2013 was Michael F. Collins , chancellor of UMass Medical School and the school’s senior vice president for health sciences, who earned $816,602. He was also the highest paid state employee in 2012 and 2011.

The number two spot was held by Terence R. Flotte , who is dean, provost, and executive deputy chancellor of the medical school. He earned $730,187 last year, and was the second-highest earner in 2012 and 2011, as well. The coach of the UMass men’s basketball team, Derek Kellogg , was third, pulling in $719,664 last year.

The governor, who was paid $137,989 last year, was not even among the top 1,000 earners on the state payroll. He came in at 2,099 on the list.

Mark L. Shelton, an associate vice chancellor for communications at UMass Medical School, said less than 5 percent of the school’s revenue comes from the state budget, while the rest comes from research funding, services, and contracts. He said salaries at the school are reasonable and competitive when compared with those at peer institutions.

The list of top earners does not include quasi-public agencies, such as the Massachusetts Port Authority. In addition, some employees paid more than $100,000 in 2013 are not on the list because they no longer work for the state.

Others received additional pay that substantially boosted their base annual salaries. Mark Klempner, executive vice chancellor for MassBiologics and a professor of medicine at UMass Medical School, has a listed annual salary of about $470,000.

However, his total pay was more than $600,000 because of a performance incentive, which is up to 30 percent of annual pay.

Klempner’s pay is not paid by the state, but through revenues earned at MassBiologics from research, development, manufacturing, and distribution of vaccines, a UMass spokesman said.

Todd Wallack of the Globe Staff contributed to this report. Michael Levenson can be reached at mlevenson@
globe.com
. Follow him on Twitter @mlevenson.

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