According to the Kansas City Star, a Kansas City, Missouri, firefighter/paramedic made $232,105 last year, $80,000 more than the fire chief Fire Chief Paul Berardi. In fact, 10 firefighters or EMTs made more than the chief.
The Fire Department provided the compensation list to the Star while the City Council is in the process of preparing a new and larger budget that would also include a major boost in projected overtime payments.
Berardi traced the excess payouts to overtime costs caused by a reported 68 vacancies in shifts, a number he claimed was now down to 13. As to how an individual firefighter could make $232,000, the answer Berardi provided the Star failed to clarify the question. With the city asking voters to approve an $800 million bond issue in April, its failure to manage the fire department budget inspires no confidence.