Some Calif. Workers Rake In 6-Figure OT
Paper reveals $1.1B in overtime pay as state debates shortfall
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 30, 2008 7:58 PM CDT
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(Newser) – As California kicks off the fiscal year with a $17.2 billion deficit and no budget, the San Francisco Chronicle reports that state workers are raking in big overtime bucks—some as high as six figures. Including a nurse who collected $198,000 and an official who banked $403,000 in overtime, the state paid out more than $1.1 billion in OT payments last year.

The costs reflect worker shortages in areas that require 24-hour service, such as nursing, the Chronicle notes. In fact, the top 10 overtime earners were all nurses. But at least one watchdog is crying foul over the high payouts. "There's a lot of unaccountability around these types of extra pay," said Christina Lokke of California Common Cause. "Many of these things seem to be decided under a veil of secrecy."