Former Santa Ana City Attorney Joe Fletcher had saved up 2,403 sick and vacation hours, at least part of which he cashed in for $191,699 when he left the city’s employ at the end of last month.
Voice of OC previously reported Fletcher’s sick and vacation time payout — part of a $333,779 windfall that he walked away with. But the city had until now refused to provide a breakdown of the hours he had accrued.
Here it is:
Vacation: 932.5 hours
Management Vacation: 245 hours
Longevity Vacation: 33.35 hours
Sick leave: 1,192.5 hours
The city refused Voice of OC’s first request for the breakdown, saying it was not a public record. But officials eventually relented after being asked to cite the statutory language that would allow them to keep the records secret.
The big payout was made possible by a 2002 contract amendment Fletcher negotiated that allowed him to accrue vacation time and convert sick-leave time as though he had been hired 13 years prior to his actual hire date, according to the contract language.
West Coast Director for the International City/County Management Association Dave Mora said the typical maximum range he had seen for unpaid time off was between 400 and 600 hours.
“You generally don’t have a situation where you end up with significant banks of hours,” Mora said. Fletcher’s payout “would be the exception; it really would be the exception.”
— ADAM ELMAHREK