New York Daily News

September 12, 2012


 

City's overtime bill for Fiscal Year 2012 is about $1.2 billion, with the top eight overtime earners taking home $90k or more in extra-hours pay


William Naddeo, a Housing Authority plumber, is tops in OT among non-cops, pulling in $104,369 in extra pay

By Benjamin Lesser AND Tina Moore
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

As City Hall continues to rely on overtime to plug workforce holes, some city plumbers and steam fitters have had their pay ratcheted up — big time.

William Naddeo, a plumber with the city Housing Authority, was the city’s top OT earner among non-cops in Fiscal Year 2012. He more than doubled his take-home pay, getting $104,369 in overtime dough on top of a base salary of nearly $90,000.

Thomas Gwiazdzinski, a Department of Correction steam fitter, was a close second, pocketing $101,269 in extra-hours pay, data from the Office of Payroll Administration reveals. Both have worked for the city for about 30 years. Two other steam fitters and an FDNY oiler rounded out the overtime Top 5.

While the Bloomberg administration has pared down the number of city employees amid the economic downturn, overtime has soared. Overall, it was $1.2 billion in Fiscal 2012, roughly the same as the previous year.

“When you can’t have hiring, you need to fill those posts with overtime,” said Maria Doulis, a watchdog with the Citizens Budget Commission.

A Daily News analysis of payroll data obtained through the Freedom of Information law also found:

  • The top eight overtime earners took in $90,000 or more in extra pay.
  • Another 355 workers made $50,000 or more in OT, and 37 of them more than doubled their salaries.

The data did not include information for the NYPD, but the city’s Independent Budget Office said the Police Department’s OT bill was about $600 million, up about 10% up from the year before. That would make the agency tops in the city. In the data from the Office of Payroll Administration, the FDNY had the biggest bill, at $261 million, up 12% from a year earlier.

The Department of Correction followed the Fire Department, at $140 million, and next was the Housing Authority, at $70 million in overtime.

The Bloomberg administration insisted services had improved despite a reduced workforce and that increased overtime has saved the city money in health care and pension costs.

“The mayor has made government more efficient by reducing the size of the workforce by 15,000 employees, while improving every service the city delivers,” Bloomberg spokeswoman Lauren Passalacqua said.

The city has 296,658 employees, which is down from 311,804 in December 2001.

The Fire Department has blamed its OT bill on a federal judge’s order that has blocked the agency from making new hires because past entrance exams were deemed to have discriminated against minority candidates.

“We’re under head count by approximately 650 firefighters,” FDNY spokesman Jim Long said.

Housing Authority spokeswoman Sheila Stainback cited “a backlog of more than 300,000 work-orders,” and said the agency was trying to make repairs with fewer employees.

The NYPD is down about 7,000 officers from the 41,000 on the force in 2001.

“The police department is having to deal with what some people are calling a crime spike but they also had Occupy Wall St. and other things like that that add pressure” to staffing levels, Doulis said.

Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association president Patrick J. Lynch said the NYPD must pay overtime to keep the city safe: “We are down 7,000 police officers as we speak and the only solution to containing overtime costs and controlling crime is to increase our staffing levels.”

With Rocco Parascandola and Erin Durkin

tmoore@nydailynews.com