Scott Walker walked out of his Milwaukee County Executive office and tenure leaving a trail of damage that continues to spread:
* An unfolding John Doe probe that has produced criminal charges against former Walker staffers, appointees and campaign donors.
* The fatal failure of a heavy piece of decorative concrete at the County-owned ramp at O'Donnell Park.
* A patient death by starvation and sexual assaults at a County mental health facility.
And now, back wages with interest in the millions of dollars because Walker imperiously and improperly reduced worker hours.
The Journal Sentinel reports that the millions owed, plus interest, vastly exceeds the County's $1.5 million reserve fund:
In early 2010, Walker issued an executive order requiring a large portion of the county workforce to take unpaid furloughs, saying the county budget otherwise could end the year in the red. Employees were required to take up to 26 furlough days. The union said the action violated its collective bargaining agreement.His actions violated negotiated contracts - - those irritating agreements he basically got the legislature to ban once he took his power trip to Madison.
The Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission ruled in favor of the union workers last May, saying the county should have limited furloughs to a little more than a week's pay. The back pay would cover the portion of furloughs that exceeded 45 hours per worker. That's about 160,000 uncompensated hours, according to a county estimate.
What he did was use county workers, their contracts and ultimately county taxpayer wallets to score some anti-union political points as he ran for Governor, and we are stuck with the bill for his self-serving manipulation.