Forget the old-fashioned term “civil servants”; America’s new ruling class is government employees. Would you like your kids to go to work for an outfit where employees average between two hundred grand and a quarter mill? Forget about investment banks or law firms; tell them to go to work for a fire protection district in California.

Transparent California, a project of two free-market think tanks, the California Policy Center and the Nevada Policy Research Institute, has released a database of municipal (cities, towns, and special-purpose districts such as water and fire protection districts) employee salaries that is stunning. The North Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area had the highest averages, but other areas of that metropolis and the state as a whole also featured extraordinary averages, not to say individual cases.

Some highlights:

The average full-time compensation for employees of 55 North Bay cities was $130,172 in 2013, with thousands earning more than $200,000 a year and hundreds more earning more than $50,000 in overtime alone. Such compensation is significantly higher than that of peers in the private sector.

Two thousand and six North Bay municipal employees earned at least $200,000.

Walter Shuld, San Pablo Police Chief, earned $440,983.
Malcolm E. Miller, Oakland Police Officer, earned $436,256.
George R. Silva, Hayward Battalion Chief, earned $428,457.
488 North Bay municipal employees earned at least $50,000 in overtime alone.

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