A proposed collective action accuses the City of Cleveland of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by failing to properly pay its public servants time-and-a-half overtime wages for time worked in excess of 40 hours per week.
The lead plaintiff in the case has worked as an officer for the Cleveland Police Department for about 20 years, according to the lawsuit. The man alleges that he routinely worked in excess of 40 hours a week but didn’t receive overtime pay. Instead, the case claims, he received compensatory time off, or “comp time.”
Under the FLSA, certain state and local government employees are allowed to be given an hour and a half of compensatory pay for every hour of overtime worked in lieu of time-and-a-half wages. The FLSA states, however, that employers may not allow employees to accrue more than 480 hours of compensatory time. The lead plaintiff in the case claims he has accrued over 1,000 hours of “comp time.”
The class proposed in the suit is an opt-in class—meaning all members must choose to be involved—and may include all current or former Cleveland public safety or emergency response workers who received compensatory time in excess of 480 hours instead of overtime pay during the last three years.