The city of York has responded to a $1.4 million overtime lawsuit from four former firefighters.
Lawyers say the city of York does not owe the firefighters any money, and they knew how they would be paid, when they would be paid, and how much they would be paid, court documents show. And the city wants the lawsuit thrown out of court.
The firefighters “knew or should have known the method by which they were paid,” court documents filed in the case show.
The lawyer for the firefighters called the city’s claim “unfortunate,” but said the four men are owed the money and vowed to continue the lawsuit.
“We want our clients to be made whole,” said Rock Hill lawyer Chan Ahn, who represents former firefighters James Austin, Chris Rose, William Adkins and Derrick Barrentine.
The firefighters, who all left employment with the city since 2016 and filed suit in state court in late March, allege that attempts to recoup unpaid overtime went unfulfilled by the city. State law allows for three times the amount unpaid to be compensated by the courts, the firefighters allege, adding up to more than $1.4 million.
The lawsuit alleges thousands of unpaid hours, but York City Manager Lisa Wallace has said the city paid the men properly.
York claims in court documents the firefighters were paid what they were supposed to get and deserve nothing else. The city hired an employment law firm from Columbia to fight the claim. That firm asked that the case be moved to the federal courts, and a judge agreed, but the firefighters still maintain that the proper venue is state court.