Government Reform

Rip-Off in the Heartland


It's good (non) work if you can get it. And then there's the severance package!

One city of Cincinnati employee received a $25,662 payout last year—for days off she earned despite not showing up to work for almost a decade, city documents show.

Christine M. Hicks was able to keep her $40,000-a-year job as a cleaning supervisor for nine years, until a whistleblower alerted the city manager's office to the ghost job in late 2005.

City Council held hearings, the city manager demoted the Public Services director, and Hicks retired with a disability pension in April 2005. Case closed—until she received the $25,662 cash-out in June.

All told, Hicks received nearly $350,000 from city taxpayers for not working.

That from a Cincy Enquirer account. Here's the punchline:

Hicks' unusual severance might not have come to light at all—except that she's now complaining to City Council that her payment wasn't big enough…."I am not able to get the wheels of justice to move without your powerful assistance and attention," she wrote in a letter to council members Dec. 26.

Whole thing here.

NEXT: Congress to Wal-Mart: No Bank. Not for You.

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  1. Pay government employees to Do Nothing?

    “I have here a list of names….”

  2. Hicks received nearly $350,000 from city taxpayers for not working.

    and that makes her different than other city employees….how?

  3. Of course you’d write a letter demanding more pay for your ghost job. Put yourself in the mindset of someone who has been successfully running this scam for years with no penalty: You would probably think you could get away with anything.

  4. Dear City of Cincinnati:

    I would like to apply for the non-job that just became vacant.

    I promise I won’t show up at work or do anything at all.

    In fact, I won’t even come to your city.*




  5. I guess you really cant blame her for getting away with it.

  6. Where is the Ohio LP with a lawyer trying to block this nonsense? Seems like they had money for a ridiculous challenge of the reported 2006 presidential vote for their inconsequential candidate.

  7. creech,
    “Where is the Ohio LP with a lawyer trying to block this nonsense?”

    Why the hell aren’t the citizens rioting at the capital to get their tax money back for this?

  8. “You go girl! Milk Whitey for all he’s got!”

    -Average urban black

  9. Why the hell aren’t the citizens rioting at the capital to get their tax money back for this?

    Well… I just got back from Vegas, and the rent’s due, and my car insurance bill just arrived, so I’m a little cash-strapped just now. Unlike Ms. Hicks, though, I actually have to show up to work to get paid, so no rioting today.


    I am so totally writing that letter tonight.

  10. Since the people who are responsible have retired (and are not named in the article), then it seems like some pension cuts are in order to pay for the shortfall.

    Since that ain’t happening, I am certainly not going to have that anger re-channeled against the malingerer.

    The city shouldn’t be complaining if it isn’t willing to get punitive on the pensioners responsible.

  11. Pay government employees to Do Nothing?

    Redundant. Those same employees will be in big trouble when they learn that the Chinese have invented a broom that stands up by itself.

  12. Don’t look so closely at the faceless bureaucrats! No, leave them be to run the government… 😛

  13. Waitaminit – she defrauds the government for 10 years, and the consequences are:

    No jail time.

    No fine.

    A nice pension.

    And people wonder why I have contempt for government.

  14. Christine Hicks is Tyler Durden.

    andy, FOAD.

  15. de stijl,

    How big of you to just tell me off without actually refuting my comment. You must be related to Bill O’Reilley.

  16. she defrauds the government for 10 years

    did she say she was going to work when she wasn’t?

    I am not sure I see the fraud.

  17. “I like to eat paste!”

    -Average andy

  18. We run a “tight” ship here in Sinincincinnati.
    I think it’s a carry-over from the days when we had so many breweries.
    (By the way, does anyone here drink Sam Adams beer? I wouldn’t if I were you. It’s made here! How did that happen?)

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