Hundreds of Davidson County Sheriff's Office workers are taking their employer to court.
The employees have filed a federal class-action lawsuit claiming they weren't paid for all the time they worked.
They also said they weren't paid properly under the Metro pay plan, which handles civil service workers.
The lawsuit could potentially involve more than 1,000 current and former correctional officers.
"They're not paid the way you might think they are paid. They are paid for eight-and-a-half hours, whether they end up working nine hours or nine-and-a-half hours or even more," said attorney David Garrison.
The lawsuit claims officers are required to stay past their shift without pay until all inmates housed in the jail are accounted for. It's a procedure they said is called "clearing county." Also, the employees said Metro Council enacts a pay plan each year which dictates the hourly pay rate for employees, but attorneys noticed the rate on officers' pay stubs weren't matching the correctional officer rates in the pay plan.
"If you look at the correction officers' pay stubs, they are paid less than those hourly rates," Garrison said.
The issue could potentially involve thousands or even millions of taxpayer dollars.
"The sheriff's office has taken the position that it's ok to pay their employees rates lower than the rates prescribed in the Metro pay plan, and we just say that's wrong," Garrison said.
Channel 4 News contacted the sheriff's office for comment on this story, but a spokesperson said they didn't have any comment because of the pending lawsuit.
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