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Beverly must pay $35,538 for overtime lawsuitBy Jeannie O'Sullivan Staff writer
Sunday, December 30, 2012
BEVERLY — A Public Works Department employee has won a $35,538 judgment against the city in a lawsuit over overtime pay.
The City Council last week passed a resolution to pay $7,156 to Public Works Supervisor Daniel Schoen Sr. and $28,382 to his attorney, Thomas Barron of Moorestown. According to the payment schedule, Schoen was to have gotten his money by Monday. Barron was to receive $10,000 by Monday and the rest in monthly installments by March 31.
City Attorney Albert Marmero said that although Schoen, a current employee, is the department’s supervisor, much of his work is labor, which by law warrants overtime.
“There’s a federal law that requires overtime for all employees unless you’re an executive employee. Despite what your title is, if the bulk of your day is done doing labor, you’re considered a laborer. So he won the overtime he was claiming,” Marmero said.
The money took awhile in coming, according to Barron. When reached for comment, he said Superior Court Judge Susan Claypoole had heard the case in late July in Mount Holly.
"It was a struggle to get paid," he said.
Legal fees for the city's 2012 budget had risen by $100,000 since the previous year. At the time the $2.9 million budget was adopted in June, Council President Luis Crespo had said the Burlington County Joint Insurance Fund raised the city’s deductible as a penalty because the city’s previous fund commissioner failed to follow certain required directives.
In addition to retainer fees from attorneys and the overtime pay lawsuit, other legal costs included a $75,000 settlement for a former clerk-administrator who filed a harassment lawsuit against the municipality in January 2011, although it did not admit any liability in the case. City officials agreed to that settlement in April.