Because of private duty jobs and overtime, Lieutenant Roger Brancoforte earned more than twice the amount of his base pay. In 2013 and 2014 combined, he earned over $540,000.
According to the Hartford Courant, the figure was revealed because of a Freedom of Information Act request.
Brancoforte’s records show that his schedule was filled with consecutive 16 hour days, and he rarely took a day off. He often worked private duty shifts that earned him double pay for the additional hours beyond an eight hour shift.
In a performance review, it was noted that his interpersonal skills were occasionally hampered because of his excess overtime, and that there was concern for his health because of his extra hours.
“Lt. Brancoforte earned all the money he made through hard work in compliance with all overtime rules. His work performance has remained at a very high level, and he is highly regarded and valued by members of WHPD,” said Officer Greg Palmquist, president of the West Hartford Police Officer’s Association.
Police Chief Tracy Gove said that long hours are part of the job. He also said that the number of hours an officer works is controlled by a collective bargaining agreement, which states that officers are allowed to work up to 18 hours a day and must take at least four hours off in between each shift.
Republican Denise Hall, the town council minority leader, blamed collective bargaining as the reason that police administration cannot effectively manage the hours of their employees. “It’s difficult in the public safety environment where management doesn’t have complete control … You can’t fault the officer for wanting to do everything that he is legally able to do to maximize his income.”
Mayor Scott Slifka stated that the members of the police force have been working without any contract because the town is unable to negotiate a new agreement at this time.
He claims that he doesn’t agree with Hall’s statement about unions driving the expenses of the town; however, he does agree that the current policies about hourly limits need to be examined.
He adds, “We do need to work collaboratively with unions to make sure that we don’t end up in a situation where there are concerns about someone’s health and wellbeing and that management’s hands are tied.”