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More than one out of every eight dollars Maryland spent last year went to compensating its employees. How that pot is divvied up speaks to how state government is defining its mission and how it is executing it. Below is an overview of the top paid workers and comparisons among organizations as well as the raw data.

All connected to universities, the state’s 50 best compensated are overwhelmingly white and male.

Led by coaches, doctors and administrators, the 50 people the state paid that most in 2020 all worked for Maryland universities. Only five are women and almost three quarters of them are white.

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Three organizations account for more than half of compensation. Four give out over half of the rest.

Just shy of 70 different organizations are charged with carrying out the business of state government. But just 10% of those represent more than 75% of compensation. That top seven tracks roughly with the entities with the biggest staffs.

Year one of the pandemic saw an increase in the health department’s payroll, but many other organizations’ grew faster.

Despite fluctuations in their payrolls, state organizations ranked in about the same order as they did in 2019. Amid the increased demands placed on it due to the pandemic, the Maryland Department of Health paid about 7% more in compensation than it did in 2019. Overall, the state spent about 3% more on salaries, overtime and other earnings than it did the previous year.

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In Maryland’s understaffed prison system, OT represents almost a quarter of all compensation. Amid COVID and the 2020 vote, health and election employees also racked up extra hours.

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Explore the 2020 data yourself

Below is a searchable, sortable table of all employees paid by the state of Maryland in 2020 according to the Office of the Maryland Comptroller.

About the data

The payroll of state employees is released by the Office of Maryland Comptroller in compliance with the Maryland Public Information Act. The Sun publishes information about public expenditures in the interest of informing citizens about the spending and operations of government.

View data from previous years

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