Justice IG: U.S Marshals Overused Overtime Pay

A U.S. Marshall gestures in April. A U.S. Marshall gestures in April. Michael Dwyer/AP

Some Washington-based U.S. Marshals may have excessively used overtime pay, according to a report from the Justice Department inspector general.

The IG’s report, released on Wednesday, audited the U.S. Marshals Service’s Office in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, and found discrepancies in the use of overtime pay from fiscal 2009 through fiscal 2011. The IG said the total overtime pay in the office amounted to approximately 160,000 overtime hours, costing nearly $6 million over three fiscal years.

But this number, said the IG, does “not convey an accurate picture of what some individual district employees actually received” in overtime pay.  The report said “five employees alone” received 11 percent of the total overtime, and one earned a greater amount of pay in overtime than in actual base salary.

“Furthermore, supervisors are not required to document their overtime need or otherwise justify the number of overtime shifts available,” the IG said.  “As a result, supervisors use different methods to assign overtime, and employees have accused supervisors in at least two instances of providing preferential treatment to some employees in comparison to others.”

The IG noted that the amount of overtime pay decreased from $2.7 million to $1.5 million in the years that the agency was audited. Still, supervisors at the USMS “primarily relied on their experience and intuition to determine” overtime shifts, according to the report.

Other areas of concern noted by the IG included the use of agency fleet and purchase cards.  The IG said the agency needed to “strengthen internal controls” after it could not support more than $51,000 in fleet card transactions, and $60,000 in purchase card transactions.

In response to the report, U.S. Marshals Service Associate Director for Administration Steven Mertens concurred with the recommendations, and said USMS would update key fiscal and accounting policies to ensure better management.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.