Records from the Pennsylvania Legislature show that lawmakers paid 258 employees more than $4.2 million to retire or quit over the past two years.
The buyouts averaged $16,000. Many of them gave people with decades of service an extra incentive to leave and begin collecting substantial pensions.
The idea behind the buyouts is to save payroll costs over time. The Senate’s number of employees has fallen from 902 when the program was offered to 819 as of last month.
In the Senate, payouts were capped at $40,000. In the House, employees could collect up to $25,000.
The Associated Press obtained the information about the buyout programs under Pennsylvania’s Right-to-Know Law.