Police Lights (Photo: Jason Rojas/Flickr)
Police Lights (Photo: Jason Rojas/Flickr)

Lavallette officials say they will work to reduce police overtime after a sharp rise compared to the same period one year ago.

Overtime by the end of March was up to 254.5 hours, up 138.5 from last year, Councilwoman Joanne Filippone said. On the year, OT is up to the tune of 387 hours.

“To date, we’re up 387 overtime hours, which is somewhat understandable when I hear the explanation,” said Filippone, with the caveat that “we have to try to pull in the reigns if we can.”

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Filippone said Police Chief Colin Grant explained to her that the overtime increase was due to the obligation to cover shifts for officers who were unavailable. One superior officer was recovering from an on-the-job injury, a dispatcher was out to recover from surgery and several officers were assisting the borough move the department to its new space in the municipal building – specifically, handling numerous IT issues.

“One of the officers was very instrumental with all the wiring and IT, moving from one space to another,” said Filippone.

Police overtime last year, officials say, was approximately $82,000.