Brookfield trustees have approved a one-time only buyout of vacation time accrued this year by members of the police department who were unable to take vacation because of staffing issues caused largely by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The contract only allows a policeman to carry over two weeks of vacation to the next year, so the longest-tenured department members could lose up to three weeks. The policemen approached the trustees with the buyout idea, said Trustee Dan Suttles.
promo“We wanted the requirement that they still had some (vacation time) on the books,” Suttles said. “They have to have a minimum of five days remaining after the buyout. We wanted them to have some time on the books, just in case they needed a day where they need to be off.”
The trustees agreed on Oct. 20 to buy out no more than four weeks per person, he said.
The policemen had to apply for the buyout and it had not been determined how much the buyouts would cost. Police Chief Dan Faustino told the trustees that he believed the $8,200 the trustees had reimbursed the department from CARES Act money for the time Faustino had put in at the Trumbull County Emergency Operations Center early in the pandemic should cover the cost of the buyouts, Suttles said.
The CARES Act money, granted by the federal and state governments to cover COVID-related expenses, covered 218 hours Faustino had spent on county business between March 23 and May 29.