Huffpost Money

Edwin Rivera, Port Authority Sergeant, Is The 'Undisputed Overtime King'

Posted: Updated:
Port Authority Sgt. Edwin Rivera is on track to earn about $180,000 in overtime pay in 2012.
Port Authority Sgt. Edwin Rivera is on track to earn about $180,000 in overtime pay in 2012.

And you thought your job perks were cushy.

The New York Post reports Sgt. Edwin Rivera of the Port Authority Police Department is on track to earn more overtime pay this year than any one of the bi-state public agency's more than 7,300 full-time employees.

According to SeeThroughNY, a government transparency site, Rivera, a 16-year veteran who supervises police that patrol the PATH trains, earned $166,035 in overtime last year. That amount that eclipsed his base salary of $107,000 by almost $60,000.

This year, he's set to take home even more money. "He’s on track to earn more than $280,000 in 2012," a Port Authority official told the New York Post. That means he's working about 40 hours of overtime per week.

SeeThroughNY's stats on Rivera show that the sergeant has hauled in overtime pay exceeding his base salary since 2008, leading the Post to crown him the "Undisputed Overtime King." But in light of prevailing opinions of the Port Authority, that's a dubious honor.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has been criticized for paying out huge amounts of overtime. Last year, NJ.com reported that the agency's employees claimed more than $90.5 million in overtime pay, with $41.4 million of that amount going to the Port Authority Police Department.

While the agency's payroll is not funded by tax revenue, overtime spending is viewed as waste, since the money generated by the Port Authority, in theory, "exists to serve the public."

Under its collective bargaining agreement, the Port Authority is required to staff a number of supervisory positions with sergeants. According to the New York Post, the agency is short staffed by about 20 sergeants, but "is reluctant to promote officers to sergeant to address the situation because it believes it's cheaper to just pay the overtime rather than higher base salaries."

A report by the Post earlier this month actually found that overtime expenditures by the non-police branches of the Port Authority dropped 16 percent in the first three months of 2012.

Overtime pay kicks in after an employee works more than 40 hours in a week, and pays at a rate 1.5 times greater than an employee's base wage.

Overtime practices in other industries aren't as favorable towards workers. The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that drug companies are not required to pay their sales representatives overtime, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Around the Web

PA police OT sarge livin large