PoliceOne Staff Report (LA VERNE, Calif.) -- The police department has figured out a way to reduce sick time and cut overtime spending -- change the work schedules of officers.
Capt. Charles Montoya told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune that when the department switched police officers from working an eight-hour work day, five days a week to three, 12-hour days, sick calls were reduced and thousands of dollars in overtime was saved.
Montoya told the newspaper that the overtime bill for the department for patrol officers was $271,338 in 1997 and $212,872 in 1998. But overtime pay was slashed to $124,000 last year, the San Gabriel Valley Tribune reported.
"When I first got here five years ago, the overtime bill was $350,000-plus annually. We've saved a quarter of a million (dollars)," Montoya told the newspaper. "For a small department like us . . . it became an economic issue."
After studying sick time records, Montoya said they discovered most officers were taking off the first or last day of their shift.