Boosted by what some officials consider to be out-of-control overtime spending, two-thirds of Orange County sworn sheriff’s deputies earned more than $100,000 last year, reports the Los Angeles Times. Acting Sheriff Jack Anderson said he was so concerned by the figures that he has ordered monthly reports on overtime usage and vowed to launch disciplinary reviews of any deputies who exceeded the department’s limit of 24 overtime hours per week. Twenty-seven deputies were paid more than $75,000 in overtime last year, a figure Anderson said could have been reached only by deputies violating the department overtime rule.
The top overtime recipient was sheriff’s investigator Theodore R. Harris, who made $120,000 in overtime, bringing his total pay to $221,000. To reach that pay level, he had to work an average of more than 30 hours of overtime per week. Harris, one of four deputies who earned more than $100,000 in overtime last year, worked most of his overtime on patrol assignments, leaving his investigator’s desk for a patrol car. The bulk of the department’s overtime went to employees at the county jails, who were paid $18.3 million in overtime during the 2006-07 fiscal year, compared with $8.4 million four years earlier.