Blake Seitz

An article published Thursday in The Red & Black [“Supervising the supervisors: UGA Alumni Association breaks its rules,” Nov. 29] sheds light on dubious goings-on at the University Alumni Association.

University policy allows supervisors at the Alumni Association to award employees time off after working long hours, but emails obtained by The Red & Black suggest this allowance has been stretched by some.

At the Alumni Association, compensatory time was referred to internally as “quiet time,” and was doled out liberally.

While supervisors are given substantial discretion in awarding compensatory time to employees, a system that allows for day-long “quiet times” and involves the destruction of leave forms (read, evidence) smells strongly of wrongdoing.

From the conspiratorial tone of some of their conversations, the parties involved seemed to know it. If you have to sweat about whether people “may start asking” about an employee’s numerous absences, your nose may not be entirely clean.

You may also be wasting student tuition (and taxpayer) money.

It is important to note that the Alumni Association, as an arm of the University, is financed by us; to the extent that our tuition is paid for by HOPE or other public scholarships, it is funded by Georgians. With student tuition rising at breakneck pace, it does not inspire confidence as price-conscious consumers to learn that the University does not have more explicit guidelines regarding how employees manage their time and document time off.

The University should revisit its policies regarding compensatory time and implement better oversight of its application.

Otherwise, University employees may continue with “quiet times” to visit the vet and pick up laundry — and we’ll be the ones taken to the cleaners.

— Blake Seitz is the opinions editor of The Red & Black

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