Leave sharing costs GovGuam $4.5M - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Leave sharing costs GovGuam $4.5M

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by Mindy Aguon

Guam - In the last three years, the Government of Guam's Leave Sharing Program has cost $4.5 million to administer.  The Public Auditor, however, has concerns about the program finding in a recent audit that the benefits are neither consistent nor equitable for all public sector employees.

806 employees were paid for more than 252,000 hours of donated leave. Staffers of the Department of Education and the Guam Fire Department were being paid the most leave sharing hours.   Auditor Frank Cooper-Nurse says they found inequity with the leave of firefighters who not only received an additional 61 hours of compensation, but retirement contributions when they're on leave.

"Firefighters are compensated for 106 hours, but are only being assessed 45 hours of leave; so in essence, 61 hours is given to them as a special benefit, which is not a benefit afforded to any other classified employee of the government," said Cooper-Nurse.

The Office of the Public Auditor noted that many GovGuam employees who are in the military volunteer for deployment as they receive two paychecks.  Public Auditor Doris Flores Brooks has joined in the Civil Service Commission's recommendation that the law be amended to mirror the federal government's prohibition of employees receiving both military and civilian pay during periods of military activation.

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