Highest Bonuses for Employees at TSA

By on May 27, 2016 in Pay & Benefits with 16 Comments

Image of 2 dollar signs

The Washington Post reported this week that large bonuses paid out to officials at the Transportation Security Administration were part of what led to the ousting of Kelly Hoggan, the head of security for the agency.

The Post article said that the practice of “smurfing,” or breaking specific financial transactions into something below the reporting requirement, is how the bonuses were able to be paid out.

According to the article, Hoggan received bonuses of $10,000 on six different occasions, and three other employees received right around that amount over a 13-month period in 2013 and 2014 according to data from the Department of Homeland Security.

In total, over $90,000 in bonuses were paid despite undercover agents from the inspector general’s office being able to penetrate TSA security checkpoints with weapons in tow 95% of the time.

Ironically, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) sent a letter to TSA administrator Peter Neffenger shortly before Hoggan was removed from office requesting data on TSA bonuses due to “concerns that TSA’s highly discretionary compensation practices are vulnerable to abuse.”

What were the amounts of some of these bonuses paid to TSA employees last fiscal year?

According to the latest salary data on FedsDataCenter.com, the total bonuses paid out to TSA employees in FY 2015 were a whopping $12,266,645. There are 58,221 TSA employees listed in the database for FY 2015, and out of those, nearly half (28,144) received a bonus.

Kelly Hoggan was one of the recipients of one of the largest bonuses: $11,191.

Here is a listing of the largest bonuses paid in FY 2015:

Employee Occupation Annual Salary Bonus
CARRAWAY,MELVIN J MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATION AND PROGRAM $181,500 $13,191
HOGGAN,KELLY C PROGRAM MANAGEMENT $183,300 $11,191
LAJOYE,DARBY R PROGRAM MANAGEMENT $175,010 $11,000
NAME WITHHELD BY OPM GENERAL INSPECTION, INVESTIGATION, ENFOR $183,300 $10,296
SHELTON WATERS,KAREN R HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT $183,300 $9,191
SALVATOR,JOSEPH C PROGRAM MANAGEMENT $183,300 $9,073
ADAMS,VERA MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATION AND PROGRAM $171,067 $8,567
GRIGGS,CHRISTINE PROGRAM MANAGEMENT $157,713 $8,000
BALL,ROBERT E JR PROGRAM MANAGEMENT $179,518 $7,500
FUJIMURA,PAUL N PROGRAM MANAGEMENT $180,733 $7,500

The salary data are compiled from public records released by the Office of Personnel Management.

© 2016 Ian Smith. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced without express written consent from Ian Smith.

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Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of FedSmith.com. He enjoys writing about current topics that affect the federal workforce. Ian also has a background in web development and does the technical work for the FedSmith.com web site and its sibling sites.

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