Paid more than the President

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Currently, federal law sets the rate of pay for the President of the United States at $400,000 a year. Assuming that he works 48 weeks a year (there are those who would argue that our current President doesn’t, but I tend to think those arguments are cheap and petty — even on vacation, the office travels with him), that works out to an hourly rate of $208.33 ($400,000/(48 wks * 40 hrs/wk).

Meanwhile, private contractors charge the government, for the use of some employees — well, look here, on page 9 — to see that Deloitte & Touche charges the Feds $249.37 an hour for a partner/principal, or here for the $294.21 charged by George Washington University for a Senior Executive Consultant/Lecturer (defined as someone who is a…

Top leader in subject area. Serves as distinguished subject matter expert in content or delivery. Maintains current knowledge of industry best practices and ongoing industry developments and completes whitepapers and speaking engagements on such topics as requested by preeminent publications and organizations. Works with other senior management and senior corporate management to develop the direction of the organization and ensure that the organization s people can meet those needs.

…or here to see the $225 an hour for a senior economist, $230 for a managing director, $320 an hour for a vice president (the one we elect–the one who lives in the Naval Observatory–earns a scant $108 an hour by comparison), $380 for a senior vice president or a senior managing director, and $420 an hour for president (twice what we pay the one we’ve chosen to faithfully execute the laws of these United States) charged by Lukens Energy Group. Good enough for government work indeed.

I was put in mind of this the other day when The Washington Post ran this story about local contractors making millions selling their firms:

Washington companies received $52.5 billion in federal contracts in 2004, an increase of more than 55 percent over 2001 and the largest concentration of government work in the country, according to the Institute for Public Policy at George Mason University.

As their pipeline of business and staff expertise increased, companies such as Kathryn B. Freeland’s RGII Technologies Inc. became attractive to bigger firms — in RGII Technologies’ case, Computer Horizons Corp., which paid Freeland more than $21 million in a takeover.

Jeanette Lee White, who did not take a salary for the first four years she ran Sytel Inc., will split most of the $18.5 million profit from its sale with her ex-husband.

Roger Mody made about $125 million when his 15-year-old government contracting firm, Signal Corp., was sold for $227 million in 2002.

For me, it was like hitting the lottery,” Mody said.

Well, good enough for government work, in any case.

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