This is just insane, and these arrangements are far too often associated with corruption in the police department. After all, a chief is a lot more likely to cooperate with politicians on "sensitive" matters when he's got a big fat payday at stake. In good-government towns, you have a deadline to use your vacation time -- or you lose it:
The outgoing Bayonne police chief is retiring with a lucrative going-away present.
Ralph Scianni, who retired at the start of July as James Davis took over as mayor, will receive $444,450.40 for his unused sick, vacation and personal time, as well as terminal pay for his 34 years on the force, according to city records.
He earned $234,000 a year as chief, according to the city's payroll.
Scianni banked $203,370.24 in vacation and sick leave; a whopping $217,448.16 in vacation, holiday and personal time; and $23,632 in terminal leave, according to city files.
Scianni's payout represents a staggering 3,291.25 hours -- the equivalent of 82 40-hour work weeks -- of banked sick and vacation time, and holiday and terminal leave, said city officials.
But Scianni will not be getting his big payout in one lump sum. Rather, Bayonne taxpayers will pay Scianni over three years in one large installment per year, said Jeff Meyer, a spokesman for the mayor.
Meyer placed the blame for Scianni's retirement payout with former Mayor Mark Smith's administration. Meyer also noted that Scianni retired officially on June 30 while still under the previous administration.
"As of June 30, the retirement of Ralph Scianni was approved and took effect," Meyer said. "The terms of which were both negotiated and approved by the previous administration."
When reached today, Smith declined to comment on Scianni's retirement payout.
"We can't adjust the terms of a contract that's already been approved and agreed upon by the previous administration," Meyer added. "That ship has sailed."