Ex-DFEMS chief sued for allegedly illegal Yutu OT
CNMI Attorney General Edward Manibusan continues his efforts to run after those whom he believes illegally received typhoon emergency premium compensation, this time suing former Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services commissioner Claudio Norita.
According to Manibusan, Norita received over $45,000 in typhoon premium pay that he should not have been entitled to after Super Typhoon Yutu hits the CNMI in 2018.
Manibusan has filed his lawsuit against Norita in Superior Court.
As relief, Manibusan asked the court to issue a judgment of $45,042.69 for recovery of the allegedly unlawful typhoon premium payments, overtime payments, or extra payments not authorized by law, without valid appropriation, and in excess of the salary ceiling that Norita allegedly received.
Aside from returning the money, the AG also asks the court to issue a declaratory judgment declaring that the personnel regulations authorizing payment of typhoon emergency premium pay, overtime, and extra pay do not apply to gubernatorial appointees; that the director of Personnel and governor lack the authority to authorize additional compensation except as provided by law; and that compensation in excess of the salary ceiling cannot be authorized except as provided by law.
According to the lawsuit, Norita’s total compensation in fiscal years 2019 and 2020 exceeded his statutory salary of $54,000, which is against the law.
In total, Norita received typhoon premium pay in the total gross amount of $45,042.69 with $26,890.14 paid in fiscal year 2019 and $18,152.55 paid in fiscal year 2020.
According to the lawsuit, the defendant received typhoon emergency premium pay on multiple occasions and his typhoon emergency premium pay was paid at a rate of 2.5 times his base salary.
On Dec. 19, 2018, the defendant allegedly received gross wages in the amount of $5,695.41 as typhoon emergency premium pay.
Then, on Dec. 21, 2018, Norita allegedly received gross wages in the amount of $3,556.80 as typhoon emergency premium pay.
On Dec. 29, 2018, he allegedly received gross wages in the amount of $8,827.08 as typhoon emergency premium pay.
Then, on Dec. 31, 2018, he allegedly received gross wages in the amount of $8,810.85 as typhoon emergency premium pay.
Finally, on Nov. 8, 2019, Norita allegedly received gross wages in the amount of $18,152.55 as typhoon emergency premium pay.