The MTA’s culture of fraud

He didn’t work laborious for the money: A Long Island Rail Road worker managed to pull in further than $280,000 closing yr — better than half in overtime pay — whereas merely chilling out at residence for quite a few shifts. Yet he managed to retire on full pension, unpunished.

And he’s plainly merely the tip of the iceberg.

Raymond Murphy, a foreman with the LIRR’s Buildings and Bridges division, was one of the MTA’s excessive earners in 2017, pulling in $405,021, along with $295,490 in OT, in step with info compiled by the federal authorities watchdog Empire Center.

And he was on his answer to raking in far more when the MTA’s inspector regular caught him at or near his residence on 10 separate occasions when he was on the clock in April, May and June 2018.

His managers should have screamed “fraud”: Murphy’s time sheets had him clocking not attainable portions of time — 114 hours over a five-day interval in May, and 92 in a four-day June stretch.

Called out by the IG’s office, he lied, claiming his union contract let him go away work if he accomplished early and that he was paid for journey time. You know, like every commuter.

Nor is Murphy remotely alone. The IG moreover discovered heaps of MTA bus and put together drivers working as for-hire vehicle drivers all through their crucial rest time — a safety violation that routinely put most people in peril.

And it caught MTA Police Department Assistant Chief Thomas Odessa routinely arriving late to work and leaving early, whereas illegally using his MTA vehicle to drive to aspect gigs.

Odessa’s scamming is very necessary as a result of it reveals an excessive supervisor ripping off most people for his non-public income.

The solely doable conclusion is a culture of fakery runs by means of the entire MTA, inflating paychecks and pensions — with non-cheating staff and managers afraid to hold a finger to stop it.

Setting points correct would require not solely an intensive house-cleaning, nonetheless principal administration reforms and changes to labor contract work tips. The ripoffs ought to end.

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