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Public Works monitoring overtime

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April 15, 2004

Albany -- After an Albany Public Works secretary wrongly claimed nearly $28,000 in overtime pay, the city has taken steps to make sure there are no more overtime pay scandals.

Public Works Department employees who claim overtime hours, now must fill out this new form and have two supervisors sign it.

In March former Public Works secretary Barbara Thornton resigned, after a Police Investigation into her overtime pay. She claimed nearly $28,000 in overtime pay over three years.

City leaders want to make sure overtime hours are justified. Assistant to the City Manager, Kevin Hogencamp said, "It's an isolated occurrence as far as we can tell. But any misappropriation or improper expenditure of public funds during anytime, particularly during these times, would be an unfavorable thing for our organization."

Thornton's supervisor, Solid Waste Superintendent Daniel Whigham, was suspended one month without pay. An investigation showed Whigham did not check payroll records before signing them.

No criminal charges have been lodged against Thornton, but the city says they will seek to have her repay the 28-thousand dollars.

posted at 4:41 PM by jimw@walb.com

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