City Overtime Report Released

by Gabe Bullard on January 24, 2012

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer has released a review of city employee overtime expenses. It includes several recommendations for cutting overtime costs and names dozens of employees who earn more than 15 percent of their income through overtime.

The report finds that the city spends about $23 million on overtime each year. The majority of that money—about $14—is unplanned overtime. Among the factors contributing to those costs are:

  • Understaffing in city departments
  • Delays in filling vacancies
  • Union contracts that count sick leave and vacations as time worked
  • The Fair Labor Standards Act, which recommends overtime be earned after 40 hours of work

No department is singled out for excessive overtime, but the report includes a number of recommendations to cut unplanned expenses by about $1.3 million. Those recommendations are:

  • Review selection and hiring process and Civil Service procedures
  • Meet, develop and train managers on appropriate use of overtime, staffing assignments and contract requirements
  • Require Department Directors to submit monthly reports summarizing overtime usage and detailing the public purpose and effect its use has on delivering of services
  • Begin negotiating uniform language which will address leave policy and overtime pay that is consistent with federal regulations and Metro Government policies
  • Revise workflow for FMLA requests that includes new forms and increased functionality of the information software system.  Train departmental personnel  on the process and requirements
  • Restructure human resources functions within the departments to ensure communication with the Human Resources Department and compliance with Personnel Policies and collective bargaining agreement

The report also includes the names, titles and salaries of all city employees who earn more than 15 percent of their income in overtime. When the mayor first called for the study, AFSCME local president Anissa Brady said employees are easy to blame, but supervisors call for an approve unplanned overtime.

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