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Sheriff’s employees get most overtime

By Sheryl Marsh · 340-2437

The Sheriff’s Department received most of the $629, 000 Morgan County paid in overtime during the last fiscal year.

Records show that employees in Sheriff Greg Bartlett’s department, the jail and the drug task force received $510,601 of $629,043 in overtime the county paid from Oct. 1, 2005, to Sept. 30, 2006, according to County Commission records.

Revenue Commissioner Amanda Scott’s office was the only county office with no overtime.

Chief Deputy Mike Corley said the overtime in the Sheriff’s Department is mainly due to employees working to transfer inmates to and from state prisons for court here.

Court, prison transfers

“It used to be primarily because of the jail, but the reason is due to court and prison transfers,” Corley said. “Some trips are about 22 hours long sometimes, depending on the number of stops.”

Three county drug task force employees received $36,569 in overtime for the 2006 fiscal year, and Corley said they put in a lot of hours to build cases.

The commission budgeted $5,200 for task- force overtime.

“When they are out working informants, it’s just time consuming,” said Corley. “They were involved in a multi-county thing that they worked for two or three months last year. An enormous amount of surveillance was involved and that took a lot of hours.”

Corley said the commission has cut the overtime budgets for the Sheriff’s Department for the past three years. He said the cuts made it appear that the department was spending more.

Deputy County Administrator Carol Long said the amount budgeted for the sheriff’s office last year was cut from $129,000 to $55,000. Employees received $214,354 in extra pay, she said.

The jail overtime budget was $70,000 and employees received $259,678, according to Long.

The overtime appears to be spread out among employees at the jail and in the sheriff’s office. It doesn’t appear that certain employees are working all the overtime, according to records.

Data Processing, with four employees, got $25,167 in overtime last year.

A computer technician, Ricky Brewer, made most of the extra money, records show.

Brewer received $16,060 in overtime and manager David Hannah got $9,053. Another employee got $52 and one employee had no overtime, records show. County department heads can get overtime. They are paid by the hour.

Brewer’s and Hannah’s overtime is still mounting.

So far this fiscal year Brewer has received $5,101 and Hannah, $1,147. For a pay period in December, Brewer received $649 in overtime. His extra pay in October was $1,733.

Hannah and Brewer are the highest paid in the office. Each man makes more than $20 per hour.

Hannah was not at work and could not be reached for comment Friday.

The garbage department’s overtime total for last year was $47,181.

The payroll clerk said that amount comes from environmental employees working on holidays.

Overtime for other offices ranged from $63 to $12,000 last year.

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