60K a year is extremely poor, compared to any private sector group that small who brought in that much money. It's ridiculously poor.
BTW - Thanks for the post. You prompted me to go back and look at the numbers so I could do a quick calculation to illustrate how poor their pay was. I actually went back over some of my emails from when I was employed to look at the project results.
In fact, what I stated was in error. Those people didn't bring in as much money as I thought.
When I actually ran the numbers, I found that spreading the project results equally over time and the number of participants, those folks actually netted the government just under $50M per year per person.
Despite that error, I stand by my original statement. If your job brings in almost $50 million dollars per year (that would NOT have come in if you weren't on the job) and you're paid $60K (plus benefits, so call it $100K) per year, you are ridiculously underpaid.
Pretty much all reasonably professional government jobs are underpaid but that particular example was one of the two worst I've ever seen.
As for sympathy, everything is relative. Anyone, no matter their earnings, should understand the basic injustice being done to an employee who brings the organization $50M a year and gets pay that low. If you pointed out a way to save your employer $50M/year, even though you're just a $9/hr employee, wouldn't you expect a hell of a bonus?
If you don't, then you're willing to accept a level of self-defeating greed from your employer that staggers the imagination.