Making Up Time in Cranston
Tim White’s got another video of employee malfeasance with taxpayer funded time:
The video shows the janitorial office at Cranston’s Western Hills Middle School from the view of a hidden camera looking down at a time clock used by school custodians to punch in and out of their shifts. The first minute and twelve seconds of the tape are uneventful. Then, a voice off camera says, “I’m gonna bang these out.”
A school department worker then steps into frame. He is identified by school officials as Neal Emmett, the custodial foreman of Western Hills Middle School. He takes a time card from the top of the clock. Emmett then removes the shell of the clock and manipulates the gears to advance the time from 8:35 to roughly 9:00. Walking off camera, he takes a time card from a rack and stamps it with the adjusted time.
The inference is that the custodial crew is leaving early and advancing the machine to capture more hours, and the “bang this out” phrase, the practiced movements of the foreman, and the presence of the camera itself all suggest that it was a regular act. The requested budget for 2008-2009 (PDF) included $278,169 for custodian salaries in Emmett’s school, with another $2,500 to cover Saturday detentions. I don’t see any indication of an overtime budget. Although, it appears that Emmett’s scheduled pay rate for 2008 was $36,629 (PDF), but that he took home $43,021 (PDF).