Thursday, April 10, 2003

Suit says city violated labor act by cutting OT

The Cincinnati Enquirer

A federal lawsuit by a group of mid-level city employees claims that the city of Cincinnati violated the Fair Labor Standards Act when it stopped paying overtime to about 586 exempt city employees.

Employees Don Blue, Frank Rotte, Henry Wallace and James Gunnerson claim in a lawsuit filed Wednesday that they regularly worked more than 40 hours a week but were not paid overtime. And while federal law exempts executive, administrative and professional employees from overtime, the four city workers say they don't fall into any of those categories.

Their attorney, William M. Gustavson, also argues that the city is depriving employees of their full pension benefits, because many employees elected to have their pensions computed using a lesser percentage of their income - but with overtime included.

City Manager Valerie Lemmie ended overtime for many city employees as one of her first acts in May 2002. She did so at the request of City Council, which voted 8-0 to reform overtime practices.

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