USPS workers earning double with overtime pay

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A federal audit of the Urbandale, Iowa U.S. Postal Service mail-sorting and distribution center showed overtime expenses that the government claimed were excessive, according to the Des Moines Register. The findings reflect a systemic issue with the USPS relating to time and attendance and employee tracking. The Register reported that seven workers at the Urbandale facility more than doubled their salaries by earning between $65,006 and $75,460 in overtime wages.

The information was released through the USPS Inspector General's investigations, and highlight an issue that exacerbates financial issues in a government institution that is already having trouble maintaining fiscal viability. Citing the inspector general's report, The Federal Times reported that USPS national overtime expenses for the 2012 fiscal year reached $3.53 billion, reflecting a 7 percent increase since 2011. Moreover, according to USPS management directives, overtime hours are supposed to account for no more than 5 percent of total hours worked, but last year's total rose to 7.8 percent.

The trend has continued this way since 2009. Postal Service officials responded to the report indicating that the overtime pay was necessary as the USPS is in the process of restructuring its operations and needs to maintain high standards.

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