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Growing Problem: Paid Leave for Corrections Employees

California pays prison employees for months and in some cases years while they are suspended from work during misconduct investigations and the problem is getting worse. One Department of Corrections employee has been on paid leave for nearly three years.

The number of probes that stretched longer than a month increased by 50% from 1996 to last year while paid leaves of more than three months rose 114%. Senators investigating the problem say even employees who are considered a danger could be assigned other duties.

From July through February, more than 100 employees were on paid leave for more than 30 days, while 19 employees┬┤ paid leave dragged beyond three months. Department officials say they┬┤re working on the problem.