The Boston Police Department has appointed a full-time officer to supervise and conduct spot checks of officers on detail and has launched weekly audits of payroll records, says the Boston Globe. It is a crackdown on double-dipping, the widespread practice of putting in for pay for multiple shifts worked at the same time. The changes, which officials called the most significant overhaul of detail supervision in 15 years, were made after the Globe reported that hundreds of police officers collected pay for overlapping shifts over 2 years and that the department had done little to curb abuses of the system. Since the new system started two weeks ago, the city has found that about a dozen officers were not at their assigned detail sites and have discovered seven instances when officers requested pay for overlapping shifts.
“We really need to pay attention,” said Police Commissioner Kathleen M. O’Toole. “We need to have accountability in our systems. I’d like to see this place run like an efficiently managed corporation. Just like in a business, we should have good management systems in place.” Police details are off-duty shifts at construction sites, nightclubs, and special events, during which officers typically direct traffic or provide security. Companies pay the department, and the department, which collects a 10 percent administrative fee, is responsible for issuing checks to officers. Until now, the department did not check whether an officer paid to work a detail was also being paid to work another detail or an overtime shift at the same time.