Since 2007, the city of St. Louis has worked to cut overtime costs. Many departments have been successful, though one stands out as continuing to rack up high overtime payouts: the Towing Services Division. Reporter David Hunn of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, writes that the foremen “in the towing division serve as examples of how the city often uses overtime to fill in for positions lost in budget cuts.” If one or two workers cannot work, other employees fill in the shifts. This usually means they work on their scheduled days off. The most “senior” employee pocketed “at least $184,000 in overtime since 2007.”
Although two of the four foremen “admitted that they regularly used vacation days and worked overtime all in the same week,” they “saw nothing manipulative about such a practice.” Due to budget cuts, the department is unable to hire an additional foreman, though the manager of Towing Services believes an additional employee could help with the current problem.