Excess OT Report Angers Yamakaitis

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LINDEN — Councilwoman Michelle Yamakaitis is disputing assertions that her husband doubled his City Hall income with overtime.

Based on official records and accusations from a competing candidate, this newspaper reported that Luke Yamakaitis, the husband of Councilwoman Michelle Yamakaitis, doubled his City Hall income with overtime.

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The councilwoman’s husband is employed as a truck driver in the city’s public works department at an annual salary in excess of $60,000.
He pays nothing for his health benefits package, which was valued at a cost of $22,400 a year to taxpayers.

In a campaign leaflet, challenger Jacqueline Williams claimed that Luke Yamakaitis received $44,139 over a three year period, which was inadvertantly reported as having doubled his City Hall income with overtime.

The husband of Councilwoman Michelle Yamakaitis actually claimed in 2009 a total of $19,637.39 in overtime pay, plus another $17,867.70 in 2010 and $6,634.37 year-to-date in 2011.

While the story missed the point that these earnings included a two year and four month period, it is still fair to say that Luke Yamakaitis received about ‘doubled’ his city paycheck with overtime in that time span.

In fact, Luke Yamakaitis was paid $44,139 in overtime in 28 months on top of his $60,000 annual salary.

It would have been more accurate to say he was paid for an extra year’s labor in three years but the underlying fact is that Councilwoman Yamakaitis’ husband is among those who are guilty of routinely soaking city taxpayers and a member of the governing body has done nothing about it.

We hope this clarifies matters for anyone who might have misunderstood our original reoprt.


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