Town attorney’s pay for unused vacation days draws questions

A decision to give the Ramapo town attorney close to a month of pay for unused vacation time is raising eyebrows among residents.
The controversy stems from the Ramapo Town Board's decision last week to allow Town Attorney Michael Klein to be paid for 600 hours of unused vacation time.
"It just goes along with everything else they are doing. It's not exactly the best government in the country," says Joe King, of Montebello.
Klein is also facing federal civil allegations connected to the town's finances.
Ramapo Town Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence is also facing criminal charges in the case, which centers around funding for the town's minor league baseball stadium in Pomona.
Klein was not available to talk with News 12 on camera, but said by phone that in the more than 30 years he's been working for the town, he has never been able to fully use all of the vacation time that he has earned. He said that the town does allow employees to be compensated for that unused time.
News 12 has been told that most Ramapo town employees who cash-in on unused vacation time only have about 10 days accumulated.
Robert Rhodes, of the group Preserve Ramapo, has been a harsh critic of St. Lawrence and Klein and says the town should not be so generous.
"People rarely feel that they are not entitled to things, but I don't think the taxpayers of Ramapo would feel the same way about it," he says.
Eds. Note: Corrects previous version that said Klein would be paid for 600 days of unused vacation time instead of hours.