Overtime Question

Ok. . . I need help again. I am trying to find a way to reduce my OT budget. I am HR for a municipal fire department. Our Fire Marshal's Office is under staffed therefore we use line personnel to perform building inspections on their off duty days. We pay them their OT rate sometimes to the tune of $55.00 per hour. We don't want to stiff anyone but the OT money runs out far too quickly.

So here is my question. I have read FLSA opinion letters describing the difference in volunteers performing duties for the same department and as long as the duty was substantially different from their regular duty then there is no FLSA pay issue. (Yes overly simplified) Based on that I started looking for regulations that would allow me to set a standard pay rate, say $30.00 per hour, as a call back pay to do inspections. Building inspection is substantially different work requiring specialized training and certification that is not required of line personnel. Nor do line personnel perform inspections in any part of their regular or required duties.

Is substantially different work on off duty days a requirement to be counted as work hours toward OT under FLSA? Is it allowable to set a flat pay for this work even though it is work for the same department?

Hope I was clear enough with me dilemma.


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