Amid battle with crippling budget deficit, OT for Richmond Fire Department captains doubled last year

Richmond Fire Department offers tips for approaching fire season

A Richmond Fire Department captain received overtime pay last year that “exceeded the sticker price on a 2014 Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder,” according to this alarming Contra Costa Times report.

Overall, overtime for RFD captains ballooned to $2.2 million last year – up from $1 million to $1.25 million in the years between 2010 and 2012 – even though the department had six more captains last year than in those prior years, according to the Times’ data.

That $2.2 million in OT is “enough to pay the salary and benefits of 17 firefighters last year,” the Times reported, adding:

“No government worker in the region topped Richmond Fire Capt. Angel Bobo, 59, who received more than $279,000 in overtime pay last year to boost his gross take for the year to $426,000.”

And while the OT pay was soaring, Richmond has been struggling to close a budget deficit that soared to more than $20 million.

When questioned about the OT pay, Mayor Gayle McLaughlin told the newspaper she was shocked and that the numbers are “too high, without a doubt.”

City Manager Bill Lindsay offered more insight, saying the higher OT is due to staffers resigning or retiring and saying Richmond’s leaders decided not to close any fire stations during the recession.