City buying back police vacation time

The Eunice City Council at its December meeting approved paying Police Department employees for earned vacation time not used before Dec. 31.

Police Chief Gary Fontenot told the mayor and council members he though it would be cheaper to buy back the vacation days than to pay overtime to cover absent officers when they took leave.

According to Administrative Officer Lt. Brett Faulkner, there are 1,630 hours involved in the pay decision.

The department, which last month hired five officers, has been understaffed in recent months, making it difficult for people to take scheduled vacation time.

With just three weeks left in the calendar year, officers will be unable to use all the time before the year expires. If not used by Dec. 31, the time is lost.

At an average pay rate of $10, the purchase decision will cost about $10,600.

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