Updated February 6, 2020 - 10:22 am
The Las Vegas City Council agreed Wednesday to pay $560,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by a firefighter who claimed to have worked thousands of unreported or underreported overtime hours over a three-year span.
Eric Scheumann, an 18-year veteran of the Las Vegas Fire Department, said he worked more than 5,200 overtime hours, either unreported or underreported, from March 2014 through 2017.
The unpaid wages were also accrued for overtime work that were “separate and distinct” from his duties but benefited the city, according to the amended lawsuit filed in federal court May 15.
Attorney Victoria Neal, who represented Scheumann, said he was on a committee that oversaw the process of building fire engines from the ground up to ensure the entire fleet was uniform, performing on-site inspections and training fellow firefighters on new equipment.
“The parties worked diligently to reach resolution,” Neal said.
Scheumann was also not paid overtime for work he did in the months following the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting in 2017 when he was technically recovering on leave after having been an off-duty responder to the attack, according to the lawsuit.
The lawsuit alleged the city violated the Fair Labor Standards Act and Nevada wage laws by not compensating Scheumann for overtime hours worked.
City officials did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday but denied wrongdoing in court, saying the city “acted in good faith and had reasonable grounds for believing their actions were in compliance” with federal law, among other things.
The more than half-million dollar settlement approved by the City Council followed extensive legal review and includes damages, attorney fees and costs to settle all Fair Labor Standards Act claims, according to a city staff report. The total is more than the cost of overtime wages reportedly owed to Scheumann, which is calculated by multiplying an employee’s hourly wage by 1.5.
Scheumann was paid $71,335 last year, and he remains employed by the city, according to city spokesman Jace Radke.