New Mexico county sued for alleged overtime violations

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A federal class action lawsuit was recently filed against New Mexico's Valencia County Commission, accusing the county of violating time and attendance legislation, the Valencia County News-Bulletin reports.

According to the lawsuit, 80 current and former county employees were "consistently required to work longer than the allotted time for their scheduled shift" and inadequately compensated for overtime employee attendance.

Joe Chavez, warden of the Valencia County Detention Center, explained that center employees work 12-hour shifts and rack up 84 hours in a two-week pay period. Those that work more than 86 hours receive overtime pay at a time-and-a-half rate.

However, the lawsuit contends the county is responsible for compensating workers at an overtime rate for all hours exceeding 40 in one work week.

Elsewhere in the United States, Unicoi County, Tennessee, is facing a similar lawsuit involving emergency services dispatchers, local news site reports. According to the suit, the alleged violations began in July 2010, when the county sheriff switched workers' shift lengths from eight hours to 12 hours. 

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