HUNTSVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – After a federal investigation, government officials in Scott County have paid nearly $60,000 in back pay to 31 officers and dispatchers due to violations of overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The sheriff’s department was also fined a civil penalty of more than $12,000.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division determined Scott County incorrectly applied an overtime exemption that applies to law enforcement and fire protection employees to dispatchers. Dispatchers are civilian employees and do not qualify for the exemption.
Federal officials say in a two-week schedule, dispatchers worked 60 hours one week and 24 hours the next. Instead of paying overtime when they exceeded 40 hours during a workweek, the employee paid overtime when they worked more than 86 hours during a two week period.
They also found the Scott County government paid patrol officers per their scheduled hours instead of the actual number of hours they worked. They say this resulted in overtime violations when officers worked before or after their scheduled shifts.