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3 BART workers spent a lot of 10-hour non-remote shifts at house: audit

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Three employees for the Bay Area Rapid Transit District who claimed to be working 10-hour days would briefly report to duty before going home for “much or portions of their shifts,” an investigation from the BART Office of the Inspector General (OIG) released Monday said.

The three employees accused of time theft collected unearned base salary, extra earnings from shift pay, overtime and double time pay on holidays, according to OIG. Other forms of compensation received while not performing assigned tasks include paid pension benefits and vacation accruals.

The BART employees “were not approved for remote work” and had roles “not conducive to remote work,” the investigation report said. Their specific job roles were not disclosed.

The dollar loss from the alleged payroll fraud amounted to $9,004, but the report said patterns and evidence support the “likelihood of a higher loss.”

One of the accused employees retired once confronted by the BART Police Department, according to the report. The San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office filed charges against that employee on Nov. 3, 2023.

The two other accused BART employees admitted to misconduct before the transit district involved BART police, according to the OIG investigation. Those cases were referred to executive management.

To hold the employees accountable, the BART Office of the Inspector General recommended seeking restitution, adjusting the employees’ years-of-service with the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), addressing the misconduct and improving timekeeping controls.

This is the third, fourth and fifth instances of “substantiated time theft allegations” in the past two years, according to Principal Investigative Auditor Jeff Dubsick.

Time theft is “damaging to BART’s reputation, particularly, when evidence supports it was not an isolated event,” the report said. “Legislators and taxpayers are less likely to support public funding when they believe the District cannot be entrusted with their funds.”

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