Hard Day's Night

Dallas County commissioners are irritated with Sheriff Lupe Valdez after she submitted her recent overtime expenses for the first five and a half months of the 2006 fiscal year. Nearly 35 jailors, whose salaries are typically less than $40,000 a year, made more than $15,000 in overtime pay from October 1 to March 17. One guard, who works at the West Tower, particularly raked it in. She made $35,000 in overtime pay, almost matching her yearly salary of $38,000. For this period, she took off only three days--one day off for jury duty, one day off for vacation and one for a holiday. A county official e-mailed me her amazing schedule for the vast majority of this six month period: She works the 2:00-10:30 shift and then puts in overtime until 6:30 a.m. Then, as Jackson Browne might say, she wakes up and does it again. Amen. Keep in mind this was her schedule--not for a few days or weeks but for SIX MONTHS. Adding up her base salary with her overtime pay, she's on pace to make nearly $100,000. Either someone's milking the system or the West Tower has one extraordinarily tired guard on staff. On May 16th the commissioners are planning on reviewing the sheriff's overtime expenses. --Matt Pulle

KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Patrick Williams is editor-in-chief of the Dallas Observer.
Contact: Patrick Williams

Latest Stories