A city sewer worker made more last year than the police commissioner, the schools chancellor and the mayor - combined.
Senior engineer Gerald Mistretta's pay was $771,841 - and six of his co-workers raked in nearly as much - thanks to a wage settlement with the city.
His bottom line for the fiscal year that ended in June included a base salary of $109,850 a year, $173,000 in overtime - and nearly half a million dollars in back pay.
The Brooklyn father of three said the one-shot windfall - which made him the top earner among city employees last year - made up for 16 years he went without a raise.
"I know it looks like a whole lot of money," Mistretta told the Daily News. "But people don't realize the hardships we went through.
"It was a very difficult period. We have families, and colleges to pay for, and mortgages." more