Living Wage Movement: LAX hotels living wage ordinance

In a previous column, I talked about the living wage movement; well, living wage is in the news again. As reported by, a judge recently rescinded a LAX hotels living wage ordinance passed by the L.A. City Council that would have guaranteed hotel workers (near LAX) wages of $9.39 per hour (with health benefits) or $10.64 without wages and benefits. Lawmakers passed a similar living wage ordinance last fall, but rescinded it after business leaders and hotel owners gathered over 50,000 signatures for a referendum, which would have allowed voters to decide the living wage issue.

In his decision, Superior Court Judge David P. Yaffe stated that, when city lawmakers rescinded the original ordinance and replaced it with a new one (very close to the original), they ignored the Los Angeles business community and "violated the constitutional rights of the public." According to, around 50 percent of the 3,500 workers at airport-area hotels earn salaries higher than the living wage. Most of the workers earn $7.25 an hour, the minimum wage of California. Workers say wage and salary adjustments and cost of living increases are not providing a living wage.

How does your salary compare to hotel workers’ wages? Find out with our salary survey.

Moms Re-enter the Workforce After Time Off

Full-time moms have noble jobs: they're skilled protectors, counselors and comforters. Many moms also acquire skills that could prove valuable in the workplace, career experts say, but often go overlooked. Experts say moms re-entering the workforce should underscore such skills, which may include managing household budgets, serving in leadership positions in community and/or school groups, and multi-tasking.

Taking Time Off: Can It Hurt Your Market Value?

America is on the brink of one of the most momentous demographic shifts in history: the retirement of the baby boomers. There are about 78 million boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, and as they begin hitting retirement age-the first wave turns 65 in 2011-experts anticipate workforce shortages. While some boomers are expected to keep working, others will leave current jobs for less-stressful careers, seek part-time or consulting positions, or retire.

Average Salary for a Pharmacy Technician

Name: Andrew Christian, CPhT
Job Title: Certified Pharmacy Technician
Where: Washington D.C.
Employer: Target Pharmacy  
Years of Experience: 3
Education: Pharmacy Technician Certification Program, ACT College
Salary: Use PayScale's Research Center to find the Average Salary for a Pharmacy Technician.

Average Salary for a Pharmacy Technician

With rapid growth in the pharmacy industry, the job outlook for pharmacy technician professionals looks promising. In this Salary Story, Andrew Christian told us how he climbed the pharmacy technician career ladder to become a certified pharmacy technician. He spoke about pharmacy technician duties, pharmacy technician programs, and how pharmacy technician jobs compare to pharmacist positions.

Andrew also discussed the factors that can affect a pharmacy technician's salary. For instance, he noted that certification usually leads to higher pharmacy technician salary. If you're wondering about the average salary for a pharmacy technician, or which job settings provide the highest pharmacy tech wages, this interview is the right medicine!

CEO compensation: The $400 Million Dollar Man

UPDATE: See PayScale's infographic on CEO-to-work pay.

CEO compensation articles seem to abound these days. recently reported that Ray Irani, chairman and chief executive of Occidental Petroleum, received a $400 million dollar CEO compensation package. So how does Irani's $400 million break down? According to a company filing, his annual salary in 2006 was $1.3 million and he got a cash bonus of $1.4 million. Stock, option awards and benefits raised his compensation to $55.6 million. Stock and dividends from a deferred stock program added $93.3 million.

Irani also received $270.2 million from the exercise of options awarded from 1997 to 2006; clearly, this CEO compensation built up over many years. However, this salary and stock compensation report does not top past executive compensation packages. If we survey executive compensation over recent history, we find that in 1998 then-Walt Disney head Michael Eisner received $570 million in CEO compensation. Topping that, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison took home $706 million from stock options in 2001. 

How does your salary compare to CEO compensation? Crunch the numbers with our free salary survey.

Four Generations at Work

While writing the first story in a series on baby boomers and the workforce, I started thinking beyond generational lines. How will the rest of the workforce--especially Generations X and Y--deal with the demographic shifts coming about?

Getting Rich off the Working Poor

There's money to be made on America's working poor, and some U.S. companies are seizing the chance, according to a new BusinessWeek article.

The article offers an in-depth look at how businesses tap into the weaknesses of the working poor--they want goods and services, but aren't educated about the best way to get them. Several eye-opening vignettes demonstrate the truly dire straits of some working poor.

Pros and Cons of Relationships in the Workplace

Romantic relationships in the office: does following your heart risk a career nosedive? The pros and cons of relationships in the workplace have been in the news lately, most recently in the New York Times. Retail giant Wal-Mart says (in a court filing) that there were signs of an affair between two of its former top marketing officials (Julie Roehm and Sean Womack) who were selecting new ad agencies for the chain. Wal-Mart says they accepted outside gifts, used trips for personal time together, and sought jobs with one of the ad agencies, Draft FBC, which they ultimately recommended.

Wal-Mart subsequently fired both of them, and was sued by Julie Roehm for unlawful termination. Wal-Mart countersued and claims that it has e-mail messages - signs of an affair - sent by Roehm and Womack (who are both married to other people). Roehm has denied Wal-Mart’s accusations of an office romance, and says she did not have job discussions with Draft FCB. While this appears to be a case of he said, she said, and Wal-Mart said, it also raises questions about the pros and cons of relationships in the workplace.

Who is the sweetheart in your life, your significant other, or your salary?  Find out with our salary calculator.

Nuclear Medicine Technologist Salary

Name: Marc Jones
Job Title: Nuclear Medicine Technologist
Where: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Employer: Medisys Health Group  
Years of Experience: 1
Education: Dalhousie University in Halifax Nova Scotia. Bachelors of Science (Biology), Diploma in Health Sciences (Nuclear Medicine Technology)
Salary: See PayScale's Research Center for the average nuclear medicine technologist salary.

Nuclear Medicine Technologist Salary

For those looking for a cutting edge job in the medical field (that doesn’t require medical school), this Salary Story with nuclear medicine technologist Marc Jones is a must-read. He gave us insight into careers in nuclear medicine technology, the average nuclear medicine technologist salary, schools for nuclear medicine technologists, and where to look for jobs in nuclear medicine technology. Plus, Marc explained some of the academic and training requirements for jobs in nuclear medicine technology.

In this interview, Marc also discussed the responsibilities and expectations of different jobs in nuclear medicine technology, factors that affect a nuclear medicine technologist salary, and the current outlook for careers in nuclear medicine technology. According to Marc, nuclear medicine technology is a challenging career that involves life-long learning. If you're considering jobs in nuclear medicine technology, or want more info on the typical nuclear medicine technologist salary, keep reading!